As 2021 gets more and more in focus, things are starting to look a little brighter. Truth is, we still have a long way to go. Covid is one thing, and it’s still devastating us all in one way or another. Along with every day life, there are diseases still out there that are just as deadly that are causing just as much havoc. The disease is cancer, the big C!
This disease attacks everyone, but when it grabs hold of our children, that hits at the heart of our souls. As you read this story, there’s a great charity event being put on by 95.5 FM, KLOS. The radio juggernaut is a long-time supporter of St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital, and as some things may change in this Covid-era, some things remain the same. Places like KLOS and the people that work their continue to stand up and do the right thing.
We have all experienced first-hand, through friends, or friends of friends the pain of witnessing a child go through the horrible experience that this dreaded disease brings. It’s those moments we see the better part of ourselves manifest.
The drive starts off Thursday, February 11 and it features their morning show namesakes. The Heidi and Frank morning show will take control of the fundraiser through their airwaves. KLOS management through their on-air staff tell their own personal stories. They allow their listeners to take to the airwaves to tell us how cancer has impacted them, and how organizations like St. Jude helped them. They engage us with their heartfelt stories about resurrection through medicine, or the loss of a child as a result of cancer or some other dreadful disease.
It’s difficult to not be moved by their stories. When you hear about the things that St. Jude has done for families, and the hope they bring children, it will make you feel good about humanity. To know that we are all capable of helping fight this disease, it gives us all hope, no matter what your challenge in life is.
To understand how St. Jude came to be, we need to circle back to the ’50s. The hospital was an idea that came from the heart and soul of the iconic legendary entertainer, Danny Thomas. Although, the reality of putting it together required the help of Lemuel Diggs and close friend, Anthony Abraham. The three cared deeply about the welfare of children, as well as their parents and caretakers.
The hospital was founded on the premise that no child should die in the dawn of life. Like most entertainers in their early days, Thomas struggled hard. One day in church, he prayed to St. Jude Thaddeus asking for help in providing for his family. About a week later, he got a gig that paid him a lot more than he would normally get paid. Call it divine intervention, or whatever you want…. but after that, he believed in the power of prayer. As a result of the quasi-miracle, Thomas promised St. Jude that if he made him successful, he would build him a shrine one day. As the Fates would have it, Thomas became an enormous success. In the end, he was good to his word. With a little help from his friends, St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital became a reality in 1962. It should also be noted that despite the name, St. Jude is not affiliated with any religious organization and cares for children from all faiths.
Since then, the hospital has done some incredible things. It’s profoundly changed how doctors treat children with cancer and other illnesses throughout the world. For example, when the hospital was first established, the survival rate for a child with acute lymphoblastic leukemia was 4 %, it’s gone up to 94%. Survival rates for cancer, in general, has increased from 20% to 80%.
Today, St. Judes treats children from coast-to-coast and around the world, and it also supports consultations to doctors everywhere on the planet. Here’s the kicker, to run this hospital, the bill is about two and a half million dollars per day. Of that, zero cost is passed on to the patient. In other words, they don’t charge the patient, their parents or caretakers for their services. That in itself is as noble a cause as there can be.
Regardless of who you are, the child is who’s most important and this organization will do everything humanly possible to help the child get better. Due to the realities of this dreadful disease, they will also help the child, and their loved ones get through the nightmare of cancer as compassionately, and pain-free when the end is an eventuality. They do this without anyone having to wonder how they can pay the bill.
On the St. Jude website it says, “BY PLEDGING JUST $19 A MONTH TO HELP THE KIDS AT ST. JUDE FIGHT CANCER. ALL 2021 PARTNERS IN HOPE WILL RECEIVE A PRIVATE LINK TO VIEW THE KLOS VALENTINE’S DAY VIRTUAL FESTIVAL SUNDAY AT NOON, FEATURING PAST CONCERTS FROM METALLICA, DIRTY HONEY, AND DAUGHTRY, PLUS AN exclusive “St. Jude Rocks” KLOS-Rainbow-logo Shirt, and A RED “WE WON’T STOP” Shirt. become a partner in hope now … Text the word ROCK to 785-833!”
Over the years, KLOS has been a great supporter of charities that matter. Their actions benefit our community and all of us as people. Please tune in and support this event, your support matters!