Vigil Honors, Remembers Pancreatic Cancer Victims
By WestKyStar Staff
PADUCAH, KY - When the lights went out in the Borders Room of the Nemer Pavilion at Lourdes Hospital Sunday evening, the room took on a purple glow as the name of each pancreatic cancer victim lost to the disease and those still fighting was called. By the end of the roll call, the room shined with dozens of purple glow sticks.
The Paducah ceremony was one of more than 60 such vigils in the fight against pancreatic cancer held Sunday night across the nation, said Pancreatic Cancer Action Network Representative Carol Foreman. Her father Minus John Leleaux died just two months after being diagnosed with the disease in 2010.
Sheryl Riley's father, Gerald Riley, died just five months after he was diagnosed. She said that like others, he was given little hope, "just told to get right with God."
Joanne Schaeffer's son, Joel Scarbrough, battled the disease for 29 months, participating in a clinical trial. She said, "Joel said if he could help just one person, it would be worth it."
Donna Groves, whose mother Nellie Groves is still fighting the disease 14 months after being diagnosed, said a cure must be found. "This diagnosis should not be a death sentence. That's not the way it's supposed to be."