Pancreatic Cancer Research Walk

Pancreatic Cancer Research Walk

About 800 people of all ages came together at the Riverwalk Grand Pavilion for the three-mile Pancreatic Cancer Research Walk.

Each step taken brings in the support needed in the journey to fight pancreatic cancer.

“Unfortunately many of us have a personal, we’ve lost a loved one and that’s difficult. But for a lot of people this is a way to sort of honor them, to bring your family out. Kind of come together, pay tribute to your loved ones and then also hopefully make a difference and improve other people’s outcomes,” said Jennifer Tedrow, one of the walk leads.

Ann Zediker started this effort after she lost her father to the disease in 2010. She hopes to help others going through the same struggle – a mission she knows her dad would support.

“So my father was the life of every single party we had. Every interaction, any time that he went out to lunch with someone, had spoken with somebody at an event. And he touched so many people and to know that we can duplicate that and in his honor host a really big party that has such a fantastic purpose – he is shining down on us,” said Zediker.

The Goal

The goal is to spread awareness and raise money for research. The group was aiming to raise $90,000 this year, and they exceeded that number.

They’ve partnered up with the Lustgarten Foundation, who use 100 percent of the proceeds from the walk for research.

Pancreatic cancer has a high mortality rate because it’s hard to detect and treat, but progress is being made.

“So going back five to seven years ago, the average survival was five or six months. Now the average survival is closer to a year. We’re shrinking cancer so we can remove them, which we didn’t used to be able to do,” said Alexander Hantel, doctor at Edward-Elmhurst Health.

Jeopardy

The disease has gained media attention as of late when Jeopardy host Alex Trebek announced his diagnosis.

Naperville native James Holzhauer, who shot to fame with a 32-day run on the show, donated $1,109.14 to the cause in the host’s honor: the amount, a reference to his daughter’s birthday on November 9.

Every donation makes a difference and brings doctors one step closer to finding the answer.

Ken Brown was diagnosed in September 2013, and has been cancer-free for five years.

“Never give up hope. Believe that anything is possible. And while you’re going through this process, believe that you can do anything,” said Brown.

Naperville News 17’s Aysha Ashley Househ reports.

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