A Journey Continued...

NOTE: I am no longer updating my personal diaries here. Please visit me at http://pennykellam.blogspot.com for diary entries.

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Many that visit this site don't know me personally. They've been referred here for information on training and fundraising for the Breast Cancer 3 Day and are surprised to find a photo of my oldest son Sean here. For those of you that I have yet to meet, please scroll to the bottom of this page for a quick explanation.

I hate cancer.
There. I said it. I know it’s not a positive statement and I don’t care. I hate cancer. I hate what it does to perfectly innocent people and their families. I hate the fear the mere mention of its name brings. I hate that we have to battle it by poisoning ourselves, desperately hoping the cancer will die before we do.

I hate cancer.
I hate that it steals lifetimes and dreams– not only from its direct victims but from their families as well. I hate that it is so sneaky that literally millions of people are walking around not knowing that they are under attack. I hate that every single day hundreds of parents have to see the pain in their children’s eyes while they explain that mommy or daddy has cancer and what that means.

I hate cancer.
I hate cancer and I’m determined to do everything possible to stop it in its ugly little tracks. This year I’ve taken on the challenge of not one, but two Breast Cancer 3 Day events where I will take to the streets with thousands of other brave women and men to walk 60 miles in 3 days. We’ll walk up hills and down hills, on busy streets and through quiet neighborhoods, in peaceful parks and by noisy cheering stations and while we walk we will become a living testament of hope…and joy…and love. And of the absolute belief that this monster will not win. That there is an end in sight and that our efforts to rid the world of this disease are not in vain.

Fundraising can be challenging even in the best of times and I recognize that these may not the best of times. It is so easy to get caught up in the nightly news or the conversations at work but I’m going to suggest that for just a few minutes we step away from all that. Consider instead that perhaps our current situation is an opportunity. An opportunity to recommit ourselves to a world of generosity and kindness. An opportunity to reach out to someone we will never meet and provide the tools they need to fight this monster – even though they have lost their job and their healthcare. An opportunity to let them know that they are not alone and there is always hope. An opportunity to go back to a time when neighbors helped complete strangers simply because it was the right thing to do.

Over the last 26 years every major advance in the fight against breast cancer has been touched by a Komen for the Cure grant. Komen is dedicated to curing breast cancer at every stage - from the causes, to the cures, to the pain and anxiety of every moment in between. The good news is that survival rates are improving. Right now the 5 year survival rate of all women diagnosed with breast cancer is 90%. It's your donations that are making that kind of difference. It's your donations that are providing hope and help to the frightened new cancer patient that will hear the dreaded words, "You have breast cancer," every 13 minutes .

To participate in these events I am required to raise a minimum of $4600 and I need your help. To donate to this important cause please visit www.the3day.org, click on Donate then search for my name. I am walking in both Seattle and San Francisco this year and would love your support for either or both events. If you would prefer not to donate online you can mail your check made out to the Breast Cancer 3 Day to me and I'll take care of the paperwork. My goal is to have my fundraising complete for both events by Father's Day. Please don't delay in getting your donation in and don't forget to ask your employer if they will double your donation with a matching gift. After you’ve made your tax-deductible donation please feel free to pass this letter on to your friends and family as well. This disease does not discriminate. It touches all of us.

I will send you some updates along the way but you can also keep track of my training and fundraising progress at www.pennykellam.blogspot.com. I can’t do this without you. Thank you so much for your continued support.

Penny Kellam

Money raised by the Breast Cancer 3 Day events will benefit Susan G Komen for the Cure (www.komen.org) and National Philanthropic Trust (www.nptrust.org)

The afternoon of December 28, 2005 changed my life forever. My oldest son was on his way home from work during a rain shower when he drifted onto the soft shoulder of the highway then overcorrected directly into oncoming traffic. The couple that hit him and drove his car into the guardrail never even had a chance to hit their brakes. Sean was killed instantly and my life was forever changed. Sean was 22 years, 18 days old.

My children have always been a HUGE part of my life and Sean's passing hasn't changed that. I need Sean's picture here because I want to introduce you to him and his story. I want you to know what he looks like and that he is very important to me. I also need his picture here so that I can remind every single one of you to


I guarantee Sean didn't think he was going to be involved in any kind of accident on the way home from work, let alone a fatal one. Please, please don't let his death be in vain. Please remember his beautiful face the next time you find yourself distracted in the car. Think a second time before you look away or follow a little too closely or reach for your cell phone. The journey since Sean's death has proven to be incredibly difficult. No other family should have to face it.

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