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Team Big Red raises funds for brain tumor research

Kelly, Shauna, Caitlin, and Samantha McCarthy

Shauna McCarthy is a philanthropy associate at the Northwestern Memorial Foundation. She is teaming up with her family to raise funds for the Northwestern Brain Tumor Institute at the Magellan Development Chicago Spring Half Marathon, 10K and Junior Dash on Sunday, May 19. In this blog, Shauna, Kelly, Caitlin, and Samantha McCarthy share their family’s personal experience at Northwestern Memorial and how it impacted their decision to give back.

Northwestern Memorial is not just a hospital; it is a community that has given our family hope, care, and unimaginable support through some of our most challenging times. It is because of the incredible people at Northwestern Memorial— the doctors, nurses, support staff— that our family members were able to be with us a little longer, share a few more memories, and have a few more laughs. We are forever indebted to this remarkable group of people and place that we hold so dearly.

Our Grandfather James “Red” McCarthy and cousin/sister Ryann McCarthy came to NMH under difficult and trying circumstances. We could not have asked for a more outstanding team of researchers and clinicians to be there for us. They were both treated by Dr. James Chandler and his team, receiving the best care imaginable. Dr. Chandler not only was their surgeon, but he became a close friend, confidante, and part of the McCarthy family.

While they are no longer with us, we remember them for everything they were and for the amazing place they will forever hold in our hearts:

Our Grandpa "Red" was a true gentleman, had a smile and laugh that could light up the room and a voice like Frank Sinatra. His famous quote we all loved him for was, “Is it cocktail hour yet??”(This was normally said well before 5 o'clock of course) He was a very special husband, father, and grandfather.

Our sister/cousin Ry had a heart of gold whose compassion and light-hearted sense of humor had an amazing impact on everyone she touched. She was a true athlete in every sense of the word, extremely talented, and had an upbeat attitude that never went unnoticed. She is greatly missed each and every day.

Our family has seen what it's like to go through a hard situation firsthand and therefore want to do anything we can to make a difference. There is no better way to show our gratitude than giving back to Northwestern Memorial so that other families can benefit from the care and research of the Northwestern Brain Tumor Institute (NBTI).  By devoting our time and pooling our resources, we want to advance research initiatives, support clinical trials, and give back to the capable specialists and surgeons that help make it possible for better outcomes.

On Sunday, May 19th we have organized a team to run the Magellan Development Chicago Spring 10K/Half Marathon benefitting NBTI in honor of our two red heads, Red and Ry.

We thank the Northwestern Memorial community and NBTI, and look forward to running for the cause on Sunday!

GO TEAM BIG RED! 

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