As I enter into the last few days before the 4th Annual Wings of Hope Benefit Concert, I’m filled with nervous excitement. I’m honored to be a part of this great charity.
Wings of Hope is a not-for-profit organization started by the Kelley family after their mom earned her wings by losing her fight with cancer about 5 years ago. There are currently 4 chapters in the same number of states. Each event held by Wings of Hope benefits local families affected by cancer; whether it be funding a “break” from everyday challenges or helping to pay bills.
Cancer has become so pervasive that it is difficult to say it has not touched everyone in some way or another. We all have a friend or family member, or even ourselves, who have fought and either won or lost their fight.
My father earned his wings 2/2/1990, when I was just 12 years old, after losing his battle with lung cancer. I miss him every single day of my life and will never come to terms with the fact that he is not here to talk to or hug when I need him, that my mother and brothers no longer have him, and that my wife and children will never get to meet this wonderful man. I was then diagnosed with Stage IV Colon Cancer in 2003 at age 26… but, having gone through what I did as a young boy, this would be a fight I wasn’t going to lose.
These things motivate me to wake up every day and try my best to be grateful for the life I have and live it to the fullest. I live for my family and friends who got me through it and continue to do so along my journey. Some days aren’t easy, in fact, some downright suck; no one’s perfect. But, I get to be a husband, a father, a doctor, a part-time rockstar, and so many other things because I fought with the help of everyone around me.
Wings of Hope allows me, and all of us, to give back to those who give so much and who are fighting so hard. None of us want to lose, and having lived it, if I can make someone else’s fight a little easier by volunteering and performing in an awesome organization, then I have yet another thing to be thankful for…