I am frequently asked if I know any long term survivors of appendix cancer besides myself. Well, since I’ve started this non-profit in 2008, I have been in contact with over 2000 newly diagnosed appendix cancer patients, I think it’s actually closer to 3000. But most contact me when they are diagnosed and I communicate with them through their surgery and their return to normal life, but after awhile most stop communicating with me. So I don’t know how long they’ve survived even though I’ve been doing this for 10 years. I have met many long term survivors in Baltimore Maryland, though, where renowned appendix cancer specialist Dr. Armando Sardi hosts a 2.2 or 1.1 mile walk (now it’s in the Baltimore Zoo!!) called Heat it to Beat It, referring to heated intraperitoneal chemotherapy. It is a wonderful way of meeting other survivors! I went for the first five years, I was there at it’s inception, but have missed the last three. I AM going this year though!!! I will also represent this organization there.
Heat it to Beat it is a WONDERFUL experience! There are several organizations there, including my own, that are non-profits devoted to appendix cancer. Dr. Sardi always has a wonderful presentation, the walk is beautiful and there is great food offered. Most of all, though, you get to see and meet hundreds of people who have been diagnosed with and survived appendix cancer. It is so inspiring! There is also a reception the night before the walk.
If you want to register for the walk, I started a team for this organization. If you sign up, register for the team Appendix Cancer Connection. You don’t have to donate any money, your registration fee is your contribution for our team. You can donate more if you want, but I would never expect that, we all have lots of medical bills. This is the link to register: Heat it to Beat It. I’m doing it cheaply this year! I got a $95 flight on Southwest by letting them send me their credit card, which I don’t need to keep if I don’t want, just pay the $95 bill. I am also, for an adventure, staying in this hostel, the HI Baltimore hostel, and not a hotel! It’s only $30 a night and has great ratings! I’ve only stayed in a hostel once before when backpacking the Appalachian Trail, and that was actually my best experience on the hike because of the great people I met. So I’ll stay there for 2 nights. If any of you come to the walk and want to stay in the hostel with me, that would be great!
Below I have a picture of the beginning of the walk in 2011. Again, it is a GREAT experience and I would love to see you there! And you would meet so many other survivors and leave with a great sense of hope!
Heat it to Beat IT 2011