WINGS OF HOPE is proud to be a part of Elisa and Kieran’s September wedding. A message from Elisa:
It all started in 2016 when I took the leap to renovate my 1950’s home. I was nervous but something moved me forward as I hired the most reputable company I could find (a referral from Becky Herb to Casey Barrett) where I met Kieran. Little did anyone know it would lead this single girl to marriage. A few short months later, Kieran and I were on our first date, starting with a hike and ending with dinner. Each day following that one we have been together, and with one puppy and two years later, we now join our homes and families in marriage.
Both of our lives have been impacted by pancreas cancer. Kieran’s mom, Jane Pidgeon, and my dad, Victor Del Valle, both succumbed to this disease. Kieran was 18 and I was 24 when our respective parents passed from pancreatic cancer. Neither of us were ready, nor were our families, as this disease strikes quickly and leaves little time for processing. There is a passion that lives in both of us to fight this disease by supporting the research, and we can think of no better way to do this than by supporting WINGS OF HOPE. Every dollar donated to this nonprofit goes directly toward raising awareness and funding for pancreatic cancer research at the University of Colorado Cancer Center.
We ask kindly and humbly that you join us in supporting this effort, which is near and dear to both our hearts.
Many blessings and thank you!
Elisa and Kieran
To make a donation to WINGS OF HOPE FOR PANCREATIC CANCER RESEARCH, click the donate button:
WINGS OF HOPE was proud to be a part of the 2018 University of Colorado Anschutz Medical Campus Benefactor Recognition Dinner held at the Denver Center for the Performing Arts. The annual event is to celebrate the generous philanthropic support provided to the University of Colorado Anschutz Medical Campus, for which WINGS OF HOPE thanks our incredible and generous supporters.
Cathy and Arturo Garcia, with WINGS OF HOPE board members Maureen Shul and Courtney Walsh.
Artist and pancreatic cancer survivor Arturo Garcia and Dr. Richard Schulick.
Courtney Walsh, Maureen Shul and Cathy Garcia.
The WINGS OF HOPE 6th Annual “Evening of Hope & Inspiration” was held November 17th with the largest crowd to date in attendance. The event was held at the Anschutz Medical Campus and included a silent auction, food and drinks and live auction.
Pancreatic cancer survivor Pam Hafemann opened the evening with her inspiring words of hope as she relayed her incredible journey of being diagnosed, subsequent surgery, treatments and now cancer free.
Nancy Spillane, K-12 Educator, introduced WINGS OF HOPE founder Maureen Shul, who shared the reasons behind her starting the nonprofit foundation in 2012, and the new grant process implemented by WINGS OF HOPE. A video followed highlighting the three teams of researchers and physicians who earlier this year were each awarded a $50,000.00 WINGS OF HOPE grant specifically for pancreatic cancer research.
Dr. Karyn Goodman introduced the three grant recipient teams, who gave a brief synopsis of their projects that WINGS OF HOPE selected to support and help fund.
Auctioneer Gary Corbett conducted the live auction portion, with Dr. Tom Purcell adding a few words on the critical need and importance of philanthropic organizations such as WINGS OF HOPE when it comes to keeping the research moving forward.
Featured speaker of the evening was Sean Swarner, who shared his amazing story of twice being diagnosed with near fatal cancers while in his teens, only to amaze everyone by not only surviving, but going on years later to be the first cancer survivor to summit Mt. Everest – with one functioning lung! His breathtaking photos of his journey to the top of the world’s highest peak was surpassed only by his message of hope and never giving up.
Special thanks to the WINGS OF HOPE volunteers, the special friends who generously donated items to the auction, and to everyone attending whose kind generosity made this such a special and successful evening. All proceeds from the event go directly to pancreatic cancer research at the University of Colorado Cancer Center – Anschutz Medical Campus.
“As inspiring as all the speakers were,” stated WINGS OF HOPE founder Maureen Shul, “what made this evening something very special were the people who attended, all with their own reasons for being there and all with such a genuine support for this effort and a generosity that surpassed all expectations. We are grateful beyond words.”
Special thanks to the event sponsors:
The Buffington Family, Aircraft Performance Group, The Comerford Family, Centennial Airport, David Yurman of Cherry Creek, Imhoff Ohlson Family Fund, The Canyons and The Shul Family.
Judy Kleiner, Maureen Shul, Rick Kleiner, Connie and Joe Via
Dan Theodorescu (CU Cancer Center Director),Maureen Shul (founder, WINGS OF HOPE), Linda Michow (Michow, Cox & McAskin), and Dan LaBarbera (WINGS OF HOPE grant recipient)
Painting by pancreatic cancer survivor Arturo Garcia on
display in the silent auction
Stacy Ohlsson, Maureen Shul and Kim Hoffman
Maureen Shul, Sean Swarner, Jerry Sinning (CU Foundation) and Allison Krebs (CU Foundation)
Maureen Shul, three fantastic WINGS OF HOPE volunteers, and Chip Coppola
Dr. Wells Messersmith, WINGS OF HOPE grant recipient
Dr. Dan LaBarbera, WINGS OF HOPE grant recipient
Artist Arturo Garcia
Nancy Spillane and Maureen Shul
Jack Baker, Maureen Shul and Gayle Baker
Debbie Coppola and Carol Ciluffo
Maureen Shul, Sherri Sturm and Brenda Butler
Former Littleton mayor Phil Cernanec viewing Eyvind Earle artwork
Featured speaker Sean Swarner bids on an auction item
Maureen Shul, Dr. Tom Purcell and Sean Swarner
Event guests from California, Connie Via, Maureen Shul
and Joe Via
Sean Swarner and Maureen Shul
Dr. Karyn Goodman
Dr. Joaquin Espinosa, WINGS OF HOPE grant recipient
Featured speaker Sean Swarner
WINGS OF HOPE was proud to be recognized at the official unveiling of the Benefactor Wall on the campus of the University of Colorado Cancer Center with a plaque signifying the foundation’s contribution to pancreatic cancer research. Hosted by Chancellor Donald Elliman, the special evening event celebrated the generosity of many benefactors to the ongoing work and research at the CU Cancer Center.
“This special plaque represents and is entirely due to every single person that has supported, donated and given to the efforts of WINGS OF HOPE, and with all my heart I thank each and every one of you,” stated WINGS OF HOPE founder Maureen Shul.
WINGS OF HOPE is proud to be a partner and participant in the annual Shane Lee Memorial Golf Tournament played at Marianna Butte Golf Course in Loveland, Colorado. Held in memory of Shane Lee, an employee and beloved friend to many at Noble Energy, this year's tournament was another sold out event on what turned out to be a gorgeous, sunny Colorado morning. All proceeds from the event go to WINGS OF HOPE to raise awareness and funding for pancreatic cancer research at the University of Colorado Cancer Center. This was the 6th year the event has been held.
Under the most beautiful, cloudless Colorado sky, 100 golfers set out early at Golf Club at Bear Dance in Larkspur for the 3rd Annual Kingsbury Open, all to raise awareness and funding for pancreatic cancer research. Hosted by Washington Park Chiropractic and founded by Lisa Kingsbury Goodman in memory of her father, Thomas Kingsbury, whom she lost to pancreatic cancer, the Kingsbury Open has grown each year as more people become aware of the event, the cause and the purpose. In partnership with WINGS OF HOPE FOR PANCREATIC CANCER RESEARCH, all proceeds raised from the golf tournament go directly toward raising awareness and funding for pancreatic cancer research at the University of Colorado Cancer Center at Anschutz Medical Campus. To our wonderful friends at Washington Park Chiropractic, all those who played in the tournament, the generous sponsors and those who could not participate yet gave a donation, WINGS OF HOPE thanks you heart fully for your significant and generous support of this effort to fund pancreatic cancer research at the CU Cancer Center.
CU Advocates were invited to hear a special presentation from three of the top physicians involved in cancer treatment and care at the University of Colorado Cancer Center – Anschutz Medical Campus:
Dr. Karyn A. Goodman, Professor, Department of Radiation Oncology, Associate Director of Clinical Research, UC Cancer Center, Anschutz Medical Campus
Dr. Lia Gore, Pediatric Cancer Therapeutics, Pediatric Oncology, Section Head-Pediatric Hematology/Oncology/BMT, Children’s Hospital, Colorado; faculty member of the School of Medicine, University of Colorado – Anschutz Medical Campus
Dr. Richard Schulick, Professor and Chair of Surgery, CU Department of Medicine, UC Cancer Center, Anschutz Medical Campus
Some of the highlights of the presentation:
Dr. Goodman provided a history of the evolution of radiotherapy, from when x-rays were first discovered in 1895, to the first cure by radiation therapy in 1899 to the present, showing steady advances in the ability to target treatment. Approximately 2/3 of all cancer patients receive radiation therapy, and in some cases that is all that is needed. Treatments are becoming more focused, resulting in less impact on healthy cells. Immunotherapy is sometimes used in combination with radiation, though not every patient responds favorably to immunotherapy.
Dr. Gore informed the attendees that childhood leukemia is the most common type of cancer in children. Forty years ago, the survival rate was very low for this type of cancer, but today, there is a 99% chance of being cured when caught early. The risk factors for this disease need to be better defined. There has been significant advancement in molecular technology. The challenge is being able to tell if a specific drug is helping a new patient (it is easier to tell if it is having an impact on an existing patient). There is a strong effort to move away from using the most damaging drugs in treatment.
Dr. Schulick, an oncology surgeon specializing in pancreas cancer, explained that cancer, simply put, occurs when cells do not divide properly and grow in areas where they shouldn’t. The causes of cancer can be broken into three categories:
In 2017, there will be 1,688,000 new cases of cancer diagnosed. Of this number, 600,000 will die (1,646 per day). One in four Americans die from cancer. Fifteen million Americans are alive today after being treated for cancer. When it comes to pancreas cancer, the survival rates are the lowest of all the major cancers, showing little improvement over the last 45 years, as this table shows:
|Type of Cancer||1975-1977||1987-1989||2005-2011|
The purpose of the pancreas is to secrete insulin into the blood to regulate glucose (sugar levels) and to make digestive enzymes. In 2017, 54,000 Americans will develop pancreatic cancer, and 43,000 will not survive beyond five years. By 2020, pancreatic cancer will be the 2nd cause of cancer deaths. The urgent need is for better understanding of genetic alterations, early detection blood test and more effective therapies.
The World Pancreatic Cancer Coalition, a global alliance formed to aggressively raise awareness and have an impact in the fight against pancreatic cancer, met in Montreal to continue raising global visibility of this disease with the ultimate goal being to improve outcomes for patients. More than 40 pancreatic cancer organizations representing over 20 countries attended the conference, where attendees were given the latest updates from members of the scientific and medical communities as well as pancreatic cancer survivors.
The World Pancreatic Cancer Coalition (WPCC) oversees World Pancreatic Cancer Day, observed around the globe each November during Pancreatic Cancer Awareness Month.
WINGS OF HOPE founder and CEO Maureen Shul, a member of the WPCC, stated, "To be able to meet with researchers, physicians and member organizations from around the world on the latest discoveries and efforts being made that will drive transformational change for those impacted by pancreatic cancer is an extraordinary opportunity."
Pancreatic cancer is the 7th most common cause of cancer-related deaths in men and women combined worldwide. Only 2 to 10 percent of those diagnosed survive 5 years. The goal of the WPCC is to have a unified effort on a global level in the fight against pancreatic cancer.
WINGS OF HOPE was honored to be part of the 10th Annual Donor Recognition Dinner for the University of Colorado - Anschutz Medical Campus held at the Denver Center for the Performing Arts. The Seawell Grand Ballroom was the site for University of Colorado supporters gathered to celebrate the impact and advancements made through the generous investments and donations by so many. Every donation received by WINGS OF HOPE is part of this grand investment, specifically to fund pancreatic cancer research at the CU Cancer Center. "Every dollar received by WINGS OF HOPE goes directly to the pancreatic cancer research taking place at the CU Cancer Center - Anschutz Medical Campus, and we are grateful to each and every supporter of this effort," stated WINGS OF HOPE founder and CEO Maureen Shul.
On Sunday, March 5th, a sold out crowd at CycleBar in Littleton, Colorado gathered and cycled their hearts out to raise awareness and funding for pancreatic cancer research. The event was held in memory of Paul Ludwig, whose fight with pancreatic cancer ended in December 2016.
On what would have been Paul's 58th birthday, a crowd of family, friends, neighbors and cyclists put their energy in action to make a difference in the fight against pancreatic cancer. As WINGS OF HOPE founder Maureen Shul shared with the crowd, every dollar raised from the event matters greatly and goes directly to pancreatic cancer research at the University of Colorado Cancer Center.
WINGS OF HOPE is grateful for the partnership with PEDALING FOR PAUL, a non profit organization supporting pancreatic cancer research through an annual bike ride in Paul Ludwig's memory, and thanks everyone who participated in this special event.
My husband, Paul Ludwig, age 57, died December 22, 2016 after a 4 month battle with pancreatic cancer. Paul had an extensive physical every year and had a glowing bill of health, yet his pancreatic cancer was not detected until it had spread aggressively to his liver. Paul was told that his cancer could have been growing for as long as ten years. As soon as Paul was diagnosed, he eagerly started a clinical trial at the University of Colorado Cancer Center and responded very positively for the first two months.
Paul was my devoted husband, father to our son Kristopher, friend to many and adventurer extraordinaire. His enthusiastic love of life was contagious to all who met him.
Paul was a career professional in the energy industry and through the years worked for Conoco, Suncor, Linc Energy, and Carter Energy/World Fuel Services. He was a member of numerous industry organizations and was a dedicated volunteer for many groups, most notably Special Olympics Colorado and was inducted into their Hall of Fame. He earned several honors and awards, including the Martin Luther King Jr. Business Social Responsibility Award and the Urban League of Metropolitan Denver Chairman's Award.
Paul was a strong athlete who loved physical challenges. Over his life he climbed 28 of Colorado’s 14er's and rode Ride the Rockies, Triple Bypass and the Courage Classic multiple times. Paul went sky-diving in Hawaii while our son Kris videotaped the jump. Paul and I ran 6 marathons, hiked the Inca Trail to Machu Picchu and travelled the world.
Paul touched so many people with his magnetic personality, passion and love of life. He was kind, compassionate and was the consummate host. Paul loved a good party, and our house was often THE gathering place for the neighborhood, a holiday party, or just a small BBQ. Paul had an iron will that rarely failed him - he overcame many a challenge through sheer determination. His positive attitude and strong will to fight cancer continued until the day of his death.
The first Pedaling for Paul, an annual pancreatic cancer research fundraising bicycle ride, is planned for the spring/summer of 2017. Information can be found at www.pedalingforpaul.wordpress.com
- Stephanie Ludwig
To make a donation to WINGS OF HOPE FOR PANCREATIC CANCER RESEARCH in Paul's memory, click the donate button:
WINGS OF HOPE thanks Washington Park Chiropractic for their donation of $29,000 raised at last year's Kingsbury Open, an annual golf tournament held to raise awareness and funding for pancreatic cancer research at the University of Colorado Cancer Center. WINGS OF HOPE is proud to partner with Washington Park Chiropractic on the Kingsbury Open, a wildly successful event that sells out quickly.
Check presentation ceremony; from left: Dr. Colin Weekes, Dr. Wells Messersmith, Mark Kochevar, Maureen Shul, Kelsey Schwab, Dr. Jace Buzek, Dr. Lisa Goodman and Joe Goodman.
Dr. Colin Weekes giving Washington Park Chiropractic staff tour of research lab.
WINGS OF HOPE thanks David Yurman in Cherry Creek for their partnership in helping raise awareness and funding for pancreatic cancer research at the University of Colorado Cancer Center. David Yurman was one of the main sponsors of last June's WINGS OF HOPE event featuring teenage cancer researcher Jack Andraka, and in October held a private special event at their store in Cherry Creek to benefit WINGS OF HOPE. Special thanks to General Manager Tori Sailor, Josh Miller and the exemplary associates at David Yurman in Cherry Creek for their partnership and support of this effort.
WINGS OF HOPE is proud to offer these two books for sale by WINGS OF HOPE participants JACK ANDRAKA and ARTURO GARCIA
SUPPORT WINGS OF HOPE WITH PURCHASE OF
Arturo Garcia's Animal World - $10.00
Jack Andraka's Breakthrough - $15.00
Or both books for $20.00.
ARTURO GARCIA, local author, artist and pancreatic cancer survivor, brings his art to life in the most interactive form - a coloring book for adults and kids! $10.00
JACK ANDRAKA, speaker at WINGS OF HOPE 2016 event and teenage cancer researcher, describes his incredible journey to discovering the first early diagnostic test for pancreatic cancer! $15.00
Order both books. $20
In November, a CELEBRATION OF LIFE AND HOPE was held in Stoneham, Massachusetts in remembrance of Cal Sr., Cal Jr., Debbie and Betty Bowker. The Bowker Family lost Cal Sr., Cal Jr. and Betty to pancreatic cancer, and Debbie to breast cancer. WINGS OF HOPE board member Kathryn Bowker Haber and her brother George Bowker, organized the event to celebrate the lives of their family members and raise awareness and funding for pancreatic cancer research. All proceeds from the event went to WINGS OF HOPE to fund the pancreatic cancer research ongoing at the University of Colorado Cancer Center. For the unfathomable losses they have sustained and their continual support of this effort, our heartfelt thanks to the Bowker Family and all those who participated in this special event.
In late October WINGS OF HOPE presented a special one-night only presentation of the SR-71 BLACKBIRD SPY PILOT CHRONICLES at the historic Orpheum Theatre in Wichita, Kansas. SR-71 pilot BRIAN SHUL and navigator WALTER WATSON enthralled the crowd with their experiences as an SR-71 crew, as chronicled in their book, The Untouchables.
The special event was held in memory of GAYLE JOHNSON, KEN LERMAN and PETE REYNOLDS, all well known friends in Wichita who, in 2014, all succumbed to pancreatic cancer within months of one another.
The evening helped raise awareness and much needed funding for pancreatic cancer research.
Sincere thanks to the Johnson, Reynolds and Lerman families, and all those in Wichita whose outpouring of generous support is helping to make a difference in this effort.
Photography by Mark Cassell
Maureen Shul’s philosophy says it all: “Life is too short to stay in the shallow end.”
It’s hard-won wisdom that’s now bringing new, life-giving possibilities to Rocky Mountain residents facing pancreatic cancer. Having lost both her brother and mother to the disease in a short span of time, Maureen launched Wings of Hope to raise funds for pancreatic research at the University of Colorado Cancer Center on the Anschutz Medical Campus. Since its founding in 2012, the nonprofit organization has raised nearly a half-million dollars to help find answers and treatments. Every cent has gone to research.
“When my brother was diagnosed with the disease,” Maureen begins, “I didn’t even know what a pancreas was. He had the Whipple surgery (removal of the head of the pancreas, as well as the gall bladder and part of the small intestine) right away, and we thought he had made it. Then four years later, it returned. Just a couple months after his death, my mother was diagnosed. Neither smoked nor drank — so we couldn’t understand why them?”
But as Maureen learned when she began her investigation, that’s how it is for many families. “There is no early diagnostic test for pancreatic cancer,” she notes, “and the incidence is rising rapidly.” The survival rate is just six percent.
“To lose two of the people you love most in such a short time changes your world, perspective and priorities,” she continues. Transitioning from serving as first mayor of the City of Castle Pines and with no prior knowledge of starting a nonprofit, Maureen put her determination in motion to make a difference in pancreatic cancer outcomes.
“It was very important to me that the money we raised through our Wings of Hope events stayed here in Colorado,” she emphasizes. “The pancreatic cancer research being conducted at the CU Cancer Center is world-class, and Anschutz Medical Campus is a game-changer. We have a destination medical resource right here.”
Maureen was introduced to the The Denver Hospice when her close friend Linda Goto—a loyal MASK project supporter—was an inpatient several years ago. The dark blue mask she’s created for this year’s event unites the Wings of Hope logo and those of a butterfly. “It symbolizes my belief that even the hardest parts of our lives can be transformed into something life-affirming, even though it may last for a very short time.”
“I think the biggest lesson I’ve learned from my family’s experience with pancreatic cancer is how short life is. If we’re not doing what brings us inner peace, passion and purpose, why not?”
Earlier this year WINGS OF HOPE founder Maureen Shul and board member Courtney Walsh participated in the Brent's Place expansion ground breaking ceremonies. The nonprofit, located adjacent to Anschutz Medical Campus, specializes in providing housing to children with compromised immune systems and their families while they get treatment. It is estimated that 40% of the families seeking their specialized assistance are helped. While the demand may never be fully met, the new apartments scheduled to open in mid-2017 will fill a need for the young patients and their families in need of this assistance. Brent's Place was founded by Donn and Linda Eley after losing their son, Brent, to cancer.
On a picture perfect Saturday morning, 140 golfers met to play in the 5th Annual Shane Lee Golf Tournament at Mariana Butte Golf Course in Loveland, Colorado. Held in partnership with WINGS OF HOPE, the tournament is in memory of beloved Shane Lee who lost his battle to pancreatic cancer in 2011. All proceeds go toward raising awareness and funding for pancreatic cancer at the University of Colorado Cancer Center.
"AN EVENING OF HOPE WITH JACK ANDRAKA" was held June 18, 2016 at Anschutz Medical Campus.
Teenage cancer researcher Jack Andraka shared how at 15, he discovered an early diagnostic test for pancreatic cancer. Driven and motivated by the death of a close family friend, Jack's story of using Google to learn all he could about the pancreas, getting 199 rejections for lab use before one doctor gave him that opportunity and the eventual discovery that came about as a result of his own genius and tenacity, touched and inspired everyone in attendance.
Gary Corbett, serving as emcee as well as auctioneer, added warmth and humor to the evening in his own unique and entertaining way. Speakers included WINGS OF HOPE founder Maureen Shul, Dr. Colin Weekes, Dr. Richard Schulick and Dr. Tom Purcell.
Special thanks to sponsors of the event: The John W. Buffington Family, Aircraft Performance Group, Centennial Airport, The Comerford Family, Paula Sandoval in memory of Senator Paul Sandoval, Imhoff Ohlson Family Fund, 1010 Global, The Shul Family, The Canyons, Washington Park Chiropractic, David Yurman of Cherry Creek, Crystal Hodge / Sotheby's, The Bowker Haber Families and Merrimack.
THANK YOU to everyone who attended this special event, bid on the auction items, made donations and purchased Jack's book. Your support of WINGS OF HOPE directly funds the pancreatic cancer research at the University of Colorado Cancer Center.
(All photos by Liquid Luck Productions)
Thank you to all the participants, sponsors, volunteers and Washington Park Chiropractic for making this another incredibly successful and enjoyable event - all to raise awareness and funding for the pancreatic cancer research at the University of Colorado Cancer Center.
WINGS OF HOPE presented the SR-71 BLACKBIRD SPY PILOT CHRONICLES in Grand Junction, coinciding with the Grand Junction Air Show that weekend featuring the USAF Thunderbirds. On a picture perfect weekend, WINGS OF HOPE founder MAUREEN SHUL, pancreatic cancer survivor and WOH board member JIM COMERFORD and SR-71 pilot BRIAN SHUL met and talked with many at the air show about the urgent effort to find early diagnostic methods, more effective treatments and ultimately a cure through funding the pancreatic cancer research at the University of Colorado Cancer Center.
Main sponsors of the event were St. Mary's Medical Center and the Comerford Family, as well as Bray Real Estate, General Surgeons of Western Colorado and the Shul Family. Speakers at the Avalon Theater event included JIM COMERFORD and MAUREEN SHUL, sharing their involvement and commitment to this effort. Dr. ERIC HANLY and Dr. MARTY JACOBSON shared what is taking place at St. Mary's Cancer Center on pancreatic cancer treatments and the collaboration and need for more awareness on their relationship with the University of Colorado Cancer Center. SR-71 pilot BRIAN SHUL enthralled the packed audience with his experience flying the world's highest and fastest flying jet. Artist, author and pancreatic cancer survivor ARTURO GARCIA donated an original painting of the SR-71 which went to a generous and excited donor.
Sincere thanks to everyone who helped make this event one of the best yet!
On June 2nd, 2015 the first annual Kingsbury Open was held at Golf Club at Bear Dance in Larkspur, Colorado, hosted by Washington Park Chiropractic in partnership with WINGS OF HOPE FOR PANCREATIC CANCER RESEARCH. Over $15,000 was raised for the pancreatic cancer research ongoing at the University of Colorado Cancer Center. In September 2015 Dr. Lisa Goodman and Kelsey Schwab from Washington Park Chiropractic were invited to the CU Cancer Center to meet some of those involved in the pancreatic cancer research and to present the proceeds from the golf tournament. During their visit they were invited to tour the labs, watch live pancreatic cancer cells on a microscope and see exactly where the money raised from the Kingsbury Open goes to. They also got a peak at the state of the art Roche LightCycler machine that the lab was able to purchase through the funding received from WINGS OF HOPE.
Dr. Colin Weekes, Maureen Shul, Dr. Lisa Goodman, Kelsey Schwab, Rebecca Ferguson and Mark Kochevar
WINGS OF HOPE was again proud partner of the 4th annual Shane Lee Memorial Golf Tournament held on a spectacular Saturday morning at Marina Butte Golf Course in Loveland. Over 130 golfers played in memory of Shane Lee, who lost his fight with pancreatic cancer in 2011. Loved and admired by his coworkers at Noble Energy, the tournament was established in Shane's memory to raise funding for the pancreatic cancer research ongoing at the University of Colorado Cancer Center, Anschutz Medical Campus.
Story and photos by Danielle Corriveau
SR-71 “Blackbird” pilot Brian Shul and navigator Walter Watson took guests of the 4th annual Wings of Hope benefit on a riveting ride. The duo detailed their covert spy plane missions and shared about the unbelievable individual journey each one took to soar in the world’s fastest flying jet. Brain Shul also signed copies of his award-winning books “Sled Driver” and “The Untouchables.”
Prior to the headline presentation, City of Castle Pines Founding Mayor and Wings of Hope for Pancreatic Cancer Research Founder Maureen Shul gracefully and poetically shared her story of launching the organization. In 2012, she lost both her brother and mother to pancreatic cancer. She channeled her grief into providing hope. In its first year, Wings of Hope raised $45,000, which doubled the following year to $90,000. In 2013, Wings of Hope entered into a formal partnership with the University of Colorado Cancer Center. As a result, Wings of Hope efforts became focused on raising awareness and funding for the pancreatic cancer research ongoing at the CU Cancer Center. In 2015, Wings of Hope established the first endowment for pancreatic cancer research at the CU Cancer Center and is on track to raise $250,000 for CU’s pancreatic cancer research.
“What starts as a single cell gone awry takes monumental effort to fight,” shared Maureen. That effort needs increase as pancreatic cancer, currently the fourth leading cause of cancer deaths, is on track to move to number two within the next five years.
She was followed by Dr. Lisa Goodman, who relayed how her medical training helped her advocate for her father to get tested further for his back pain, an act which ultimately revealed he had pancreatic cancer. She channeled her grief into organizing a golf tournament in her father’s honor and brightly shared that it raised $20,000. The funds are going to help Wings of Hope in its mission to fund ongoing pancreatic cancer research.
“I’m excited to partner with Wings of Hope,” said a smiling Dr. Goodman. “It’s an honor to work with Maureen.”
Elias Gebru, originally from Africa, spoke beautifully about his journey of being diagnosed with pancreatic cancer, and despite not having his own family here, had family through Wings of Hope. People, such as Dr. Purcell, helped him navigate his treatment and balance his living situation.
Dr. Jill Pechacek came to the podium with five guiding words. The first was Dream. Since she was 4, she dreamed of being a physician. At 26, months away from realizing that dream, she was diagnosed with ovarian cancer. She went through treatment while finishing medical school. She elected not to have surgery so she had a shot at her next dream: Motherhood. With palpable pride, she shared she is the mother of three and pointed out her children sitting in the second row. She gave Faith as her third word. She now has a new challenge and needs faith and strength to say each day “Not ‘Why me,’ but instead ‘Chose me, Use me so I may do some good and help others today.’” She’s strong in her faith as, at age 46, she was diagnosed with stage-4 pancreatic cancer.
“I tell every doctor ‘I need 10.’ They don’t understand and I say ‘I need 10 years so I can see my children graduate from high school,’ ” shared Dr. Pechacek.
She added Grateful and Give to her list, relaying that she is grateful for every moment, especially those with her children and encouraged the audience to give supporting words, volunteer time and contribute their resources.
“If you can give someone the words ‘I believe in You’ you will be giving powerfully. Those words fuel my faith and fill my spirit.”
A silent slide show closed the opening segment of the program. With the same grace in which all the messaging was delivered, the last slide read “Heartfully. Hopefully. Honestly. Thank You.” These simple words of truth conveyed the deep appreciation Wings of Hope has for its supporters. Yet, the one who wrote them, Maureen Shul, is the one most deserving of them.
Lorraine Bell and Richard Hogen are proud to
support Wings of Hope
Pancreatic survivor artist Arturo Garcia is proud to share his work to help Wings of Hope
Dennyse and Erika Tejeda show off Arturo
Arturo Garcia painted the SR-71 for the
Enticing aviation-oriented silent auction items
Marty Dickerson, left, smiles with Doug Fox and Courtney Walsh
An amazing crew of speakers: Brian Shul, left, Maureen Shul and Walter Watson
James Taylor, left, smiles with Rogers Hemphill
A super evening for Wings of Hope superstars
Gene Gillette, left, and Diane Azlant are proud to support Wings of Hope
James Huffman, left, takes time for a photo with Rogers Hemphill
Paul Squyer, left, smiles with Walter Watson and Bill Mason
It’s a fun night out for Dani Rush, left, Daisy Urso, Jim Urso and Arturo Garcia
Great smiles by Dr. Jace Buzek, left, Jackie Buzek, Joe Goodman, Dr. Lisa Goodman and Kelsey Schwab
Marty Dickerson, left, with friend Bonnie Winters-Collins
Jody and Lisa Eklund enjoy time before the presentation
Judy Ginter catches up with Bob Beabout before the program
John Scott, left, takes time for a photo with Master Sargent, USAF Don Hinson
T-shirts commemorating the event
Dave Schmidt, left, and Russ Broshous are honored to be a part of Wings of Hope
Milt and Jan Ferry enjoy the evening
Larry Hofmann and Carrie McKee relax before the evening’s program
Warm smiles from Norma and Ray Hendry
Pastor Dave Jensen, left, smiles with Debbie Coppola, Chip Coppola and Carol Ciluffo
The girls together: Carmel Scopelliti, left, Stacy Ohlsson and Karen Hinkel
Cathy Schwartz, left, join Carmel Scopelliti, Stacy Ohlsson and Karen Hinkel for a photo
Marge Tepper, left, with friends Judy Dearasaugh and Judy Kleiner
David Crist, left, smiles with Bev Groth and Betty Dysart
Jennifer and David Novinger are happy to support Wings of Hope
Service with a smile: volunteers welcome guests at registration
A fun group: Janelle Chavez, front, Andrea Ludwig, left, Tom Rosenkrans, Kaylar Neumann, Eric and Lauren Ross
Dad Peter shared the evening with his son David Jones
Jo Ann McKie, left, catches up with Nancy Bohlen
Laughing the night away: Lisa Brodin, left, Tim Butler, Marc Frank and Brenda Butler
Longtime friends: Max Barber, left, and Courtney Walsh
Daughter-Mother Duo: Melany and Max Barber
Brothers’ Night Out: Lucas, left, and Zach Zahorik
Warm smiles from Scott and Melissa Drexler
Ola and Stuart Butler are proud to support Wings of Hope
Aviation-oriented silent auction items
Mike and Teri Hulett take time for a photo
Father-son Night Out: Ben and Benjamin Bohannon
Larry Johnson, left, takes a moment for a photo with Chip Martin
Lovely smiles from Angel Tuccy, left, and Sue Kenfield
Carmel Scopelliti, left, with friends Jeff Cain and Stacy Ohlsson
Inspiring survivors: Dr. Jill Pechacek, left, and Elias Gebru
Wings of Hope Trio: Maureen Shul, left, Dr. Jill Pechacek and Elias Gebru
Ron and Valerie Fitzpatrick get a photo with the evening’s speaker Walter Watson
Walter Watson, left, and Brian Shul take a photo with Robert and Marilyn Olislagers
Team Hause: Chuck, left, Andrea, Laura and Mike Hause
Diane Shea and Bert Goins are proud to be a part of Wings of Hope
Happy smiles from Vicky Levin, left, and Maxine McDonald
Becca Brodin, left, smiles with Lisa Brodin
Team Brodin: Lisa, left, Becca and Bob Brodin
A full house at the Lone Tree Arts Center
John Brackney takes the stage
Maureen Shul shares her story with captive listeners
Dr. Lisa Goodman shares about her dad’s experience with pancreatic cancer
Gabru Elias speaks about his “family” of supporters in the United States as he battles cancer
Mark Kochevar informs the audience about the amazing work of the CU Cancer Center
WINGS OF HOPE hosts its 2nd annual evening of painting and sipping (wine) for pancreatic cancer patients and their families at Sipping n' Painting Hampden.
The annual KNOCK OUT CANCER GALA was held at the Denver Hyatt Regency with Denver-based band The Fray wowing the packed crowd. Co-chaired by Nancy and Philip Anschutz, Mary and Bruce Benson, Maureen and John Harney and Marcia and Dick Robinson, the event is to benefit the University of Colorado Cancer Center, the only NCI-designated cancer center within an 800 mile radius.
The 3rd Annual WINGS OF HOPE BENEFIT was held at The Wildlife Experience with keynote speaker ERIC ALEXANDER, recounting his historic climb to the top of Mt. Everest. Emcee JOHN BRACKNEY introduced WINGS OF HOPE founder MAUREEN SHUL, who, in her remarks, announced the establishment of the first endowment at the CU Cancer Center for pancreatic cancer research by WINGS OF HOPE. Dr. COLIN WEEKES shared with the sellout audience how the $45,000 received by the CU Cancer Center after last year's event was used, and the current research projects taking place. KELLEY GLEASON, KATHRYN HABER and JIM COMERFORD shared their personal experiences with pancreatic cancer that touched every person in the audience. A WINGS OF HOPE video was shown that highlighted MELANIE AVNER'S personal account of how pancreatic cancer impacted her life, as well as local author and artist ARTURO GARCIA, a pancreatic cancer survivor. Arturo Garcia's artwork was not only on display and for sale before and after the event, he also generously donated one of his more popular paintings, "Broncos," for the live auction. GARY CORBETT brought his own unique energy as auctioneer and had the crowd thoroughly entertained and giving generously to the WINGS OF HOPE efforts.
Heartfelt thanks to our generous sponsors, attendees, donors, speakers, auctioneer and volunteers who made the evening so profoundly meaningful and successful.
Special thanks to photographer LYNN ZAHORIK for the following photos.
On February 9, WINGS OF HOPE proudly hosted an evening of painting and fun for CU Cancer Center Anschutz Medical Campus patients, their families and friends at "Sipping N' Painting Hampden." With no artistic abilities required, all enjoyed the learning process of creating their own masterpiece amidst the camaraderie of one another.
Special thanks to "Sipping N' Painting Hampden" owner Kelly Doak for helping to make the evening so enjoyable and memorable for every one.
The newly opened CU Lone Tree Clinic was the setting for the January 30th CU Cancer Center presentation on pancreatic cancer.
Those who braved the winter conditions heard first hand the latest research and treatment updates from CU Cancer Center physicians at the forefront of pancreatic cancer, including Dr. Wells Messersmith and Dr. Barish Edil. Dr. Colin Weekes provided an overview of the current research taking place at the CU Cancer Center, explaining specifically how the donations received from WINGS OF HOPE FOR PANCREATIC CANCER RESEARCH are making a difference in moving the research forward. But it was Dr. David Raben's impassioned remarks that provided the irrefutable evidence for CU Cancer Center being the leading medical institution nationwide in pancreatic cancer research and treatment.
Maureen Shul, founder of WINGS OF HOPE, also spoke on the reasons WINGS OF HOPE was formed, and its dedicated efforts to raising awareness and funding for the pancreatic cancer research ongoing at the CU Cancer Center.
In the audience were several pancreatic cancer survivors and patients, sharing their experiences and expressing gratitude for the tremendous care and treatment they received at the CU Cancer Center. Also in attendance were Dr. Eamon Berge, Dr. Chris Lieu, and Allison Krebs, Director of Development at the CU Cancer Center.
10/15/13 - Thank you to everyone who attended the October 15th Colorado Avalanche game on behalf of WINGS OF HOPE. More than the Avalanche advancing to 6-0, your participation directly benefits the pancreatic research programs ongoing at the University of Colorado Cancer Center.
The July 26th presentation, attended by board members and supporters of WINGS OF HOPE, as well as UCCC staff, included Dr. Colin Weekes providing an update on the latest developments in pancreatic cancer research. The WINGS OF HOPE donation will be used to support a human-patient derived xenograft model to help determine the genetic characteristics of a patient's tumor and to develop molecular-based therapeutic strategies encompassing biomarker development.
WINGS OF HOPE founder Maureen Shul expressed gratitude to all those who made the donation possible through their generous support of the foundation and made it known that plans are underway for upcoming events.
For more pictures, click on NEWS.
BLACKTIE COLORADO COVERS WINGS OF HOPE APRIL 25th EVENT: click on this link....
Wings of Hope for Pancreatic Cancer Research past event.
The first WINGS OF HOPE benefit took place October 22nd, 2011 at the Wings Over the Rockies Air & Space Museum. The event, organized by former Castle Pines Mayor Maureen Shul and sponsored by the Pancreatic Cancer Action Network, was to help raise awareness and research funding for pancreatic cancer.
Featured speaker at the aviation-themed gala was Maureen's brother, SR-71 Pilot Brian Shul, author of the acclaimed "Sled Driver." Brian shared his inspiring story of being shot down in Vietnam, hospitalized for injuries sustained for nearly two years, only to come back to pilot the top-secret Blackbird, the world's fastest and highest flying aircraft ever built.
Maureen Shul organized the WINGS OF HOPE benefit in honor of her mother and brother, Victor, both of whom died of pancreatic cancer.
It was just months after losing her brother that Maureen's mother was diagnosed with pancreatic cancer, this in addition to the Alzheimer's disease she had been diagnosed with eight years earlier. Blanche Shul passed away from pancreatic cancer three months after being diagnosed, never aware that her son had succumbed to the disease months earlier.
Propelled by grief and a desire to honor her brother and mother, Maureen's goal for WINGS OF HOPE was to help raise awareness and research dollars for pancreatic cancer. "My family was stunned as to how little there was in the way of early diagnostic testing for pancreatic cancer," Shul states. "Just as shocking, the five-year survival rate has remained at just six percent for the last 40 years." Despite no early detection tools, no effective treatments and no cure, just two percent of the National Cancer Institute's federal research funding is allocated to pancreatic cancer.
"My desire is that WINGS OF HOPE will raise awareness as well as research funding to mount a viable assault on the disease," Shul states. "When you suffer through losses this profound you are compelled to do something to honor your loved ones in ways that will hopefully result in more awareness and resources to help the many others whose lives have been or will be impacted by this horrific disease."
JOIN THE EFFORT…BE A PART OF THE POSSIBLE, BE THE HOPE.