Sunday, September 21, 2008

Inspirational Women

This post is on a rather personal note...
My Grandma, Pauline Decker, passed away in February of this year at age 87 due to Non-Hodgkin Lymphoma and heart disease. She was quite the amazing woman, the mother of 13 children, she had 28 grandchildren and 22 great-grandchildren. Grandma and Grandpa (Tony) raised their family of 13 on a farm near Dickinson, North Dakota where they lived until 1987 when they retired and moved into town.

My cousin, Melanie, is preparing to run the Nike Women’s Marathon (26.2 miles) in San Francisco on October 19th in my Grandmother's honor. Melanie's goal is to raise $5,000 for the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society. She ran the Rock n' Roll Marathon in San Diego in 2003 and raised $3,800. Melanie put it best when she emailed our family and said: "As I write, I realize times are tough for everyone and it is truly hard for me to ask you to consider making a donation, even to this very worthy cause. At the same time, I realize that for cancer patients and their families, times are even harder. I would like to ask for your support in raising funds to help stop leukemia, lymphoma, Hodgkin lymphoma and myeloma from taking more lives."

This is a very personal subject for a lot of families. My Dad has had stomach cancer twice and beat it! My cousin, Mason, was only 4 years old when they found a fast-growing tumor in his chest that would have caused him to suffocate if they had waited only a few more hours.
Aunt Peggy, who fought so galantly to survive, died in 1998 from small cell carcinoma lung cancer. Aunt Diane has been a 28 year survivor of synovial sarcoma cancer. My maternal Grandmother has undergone procedures to rid her of the same breast cancer that has taken the lives of other women in our family. If you would like to know more about the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society (LLS) click here. If you would like to know more about Teams in Training click here. If you would like to know more about the Nike Women’s Marathon click here. If you would like to donate to the LLS by being a sponsor for Melanie, click here, or email me at and I will put you in touch with Melanie.

Did I say the run is 26.2 miles!!?! Good luck, Melanie! You can do it!

thanks Aunt Diane for the photos!

top left: Pauline Kuntz
middle: Anton "Tony" Decker & Pauline (Kuntz) Decker, October 28, 1940
right: Pauline Decker (awesome horn-rimmed glasses) holding her son, Dick Decker, and her son (My Dad!) Robin Decker (standing). (1960)
bottom: Pauline Decker (2004)


Lauren W said...

Love the photos :)
When does she need all of the donations to be in?

kd-m said...

Her goal is end of October. Yea, my Aunt Diane has all of these AMAZING family photos archived. it's pretty awesome!