On February 8, 2006 our daughter, Jenna Susana Westerholm, was diagnosed with embryonal rhabdomyosarcoma. Sarcomas are cancers of the body tissues and of the bone. It is considered an orphan cancer because sarcoma is rare (1% of adults and 15% of children are diagnosed) and receives little attention or funding for research. The five-year survival rate is only 51%.
During Jenna’s three years of treatment, Chris missed many days of work, our income was greatly reduced, and we had a new baby. We personally felt the financial and emotional strain caused by having a child with cancer.
Jenna did not survive cancer. In her memory we founded The Dragon’s Last Ride, a motorcycle ride that raises money to support children and families who are undergoing cancer treatment at Seattle Children’s Hospital and other hospitals in the area. The Northwest Sarcoma Foundation disperses the funds we raise to the families in need of financial assistance in Alaska, Montana, Idaho, Washington, and Oregon.
Chris and Michele Westerholm