It was Friday, February 12, in the Founders Room at the Dallas Country Club, where the Children’s Cancer Fund Advisory Board was meeting to learn about plans for the upcoming “An Evening in Oz” on Friday, April 22, at the Hilton Anatole.
For early arrivals like Lynn and Jim Stroud, the Children’s Cancer Fund was more than meetings and fundraising. It was a passion resulting from the death of their daughter Jennifer Lynn Stroud’s death to cancer. The thought of her daughter still ignited tears in her mom even after all these years.
It was back in 1993, that Lynn and Jim and Jennifer’s big brother/7-year-old Will Stroud were slammed when 5-year-old Jennifer was diagnosed with a rare form of leukemia on Christmas Eve.
Jim admitted looking back they were totally blindsided. While most kids dread their annual vaccinations, Jennifer underwent nasty but necessary treatments of chemo and radiation. Still it wasn’t enough. At that time there were only 40+ cases of that type of leukemia in the country.
Despite their ability to personally provide $1M in trying to save their daughter and the best healthcare provided by Children’s and M.D. Anderson, they lost Jennifer 26 months later.
But Lynn and Jim Stroud and even Will didn’t hesitate to continue the battle against children’s cancer. Unlike some families that falter and fall apart under such strain, the Strouds came together to carry on the battle against pediatric cancer. Lynn and Jim created the Jennifer Lynn Stroud Foundation to “promote research for a leukemia cure and offers educational, emotional and spiritual support to families impacted by pediatric cancer.”
They also joined the Children’s Cancer Fund. Will, who went into investments with his dad, earned his private pilot’s license and flies pediatric cancer patients between Dallas and Houston’s M.D. Anderson.
Jennifer may have been lost due to cancer, but the battle against cancer gained a trio of warriors in the Stroud clan.
It is that type of long-term commitment that makes the Strouds and the Children’ Cancer Fund forces to be reckoned in the world of pediatric cancer.
Want to meet Lynn, Jim and all-grown-up Will? Chances you’ll run into them at the Children’s Cancer Fund Gala.