I’m participating in Great Strides and want you to join me to help TEAM LEVINE raise money to help defeat Cystic Fibrosis! The entire Levine family has been very special to me since I first got to know Mark more than 30 years ago when we were in the youth group AZA. Mark happens to have CF, but I am always in awe of how he has never let it define him or stop him from doing anything, from raising a family, to being a valued engineer at Chrysler, to being great on the Tennis court. Mark asked me to help create a “CT Chapter” of TEAM LEVINE to walk on Sunday, May 5th in West Haven, to represent the state where he grew up (joining other TEAM LEVINE walks around the country, under Mark’s main page). I walk for Mark, am honored to help him, and hope you can join the TEAM LEVINE CT walk. The details for the walk, and for donations to fund research to defeat CF, are included in the links below.
Not only have I have been lucky enough to call Mark a friend, I also had the fortune to become close friends with his younger brother David who graduated from Amity High School in 1991. I will never forget our entire class giving him a standing ovation as he received his degree. I did not know David very well until after he returned to Amity following the heart-lung transplant he had due to complications from CF. We had a study hall which David made sure went by quickly due to his witty jokes and a pleasant demeanor that kept the room light. David was a one of a kind in the best way possible! Throughout Senior year, Dave and I spent many days at each of our family’s houses. We also spent a lot of time with other friends of ours who Dave kept smiling with his humor, and of course with family members who we both grew close to, in my case Mark and Dave’s parents Len and Jane (two of the kindest people I know). David loved the movies, especially anything with Arnold Schwarzenegger, and of course comedies. He had us laughing in our seats before a movie started, as my sister Jennifer can attest to, and still has the fondest memories of. Dave also never let CF (or his heart-lung transplant) stop him from doing the things he loved. He could hit a Tennis ball with the best of them, and like a jackrabbit, he’d get to the ball before you knew what happened. His artistic talent was obvious to anyone who saw his work, and he was a great student. He also was as wonderful a friend as anyone could ever ask for. While he had so much to deal with, he cared even more about what was happening with his friends and family and always managed to check-in no matter how he was feeling. His bravery and incredible attitude always amazed me. Sadly, David passed away due to complications from CF in 1993. Part of his epitaph says, “Hero to us all.” David was the embodiment of that. I also walk in memory of David. I hope you will join the walk or find it in your heart to join TEAM LEVINE by donating to the fight against a disease that took my close friend David at far too young of an age.
For 30 years, Great Strides – the Cystic Fibrosis Foundation’s largest national fundraising event – has supported the Foundation’s mission to cure cystic fibrosis and raise awareness for this rare, genetic, life-shortening disease that makes it difficult to breathe.
By walking with TEAM LEVINE CT, you’ll help accelerate innovative research and drug development, as well as advance care and advocacy. Nearly every CF drug was made possible by the Foundation and because of funds raised from Great Strides, people with CF are living longer, healthier lives and pursuing their dreams.
We are working every day to build on this incredible momentum, and we won’t stop until there is a cure for all people living with CF.
There are still many more steps to be taken. Together, we can conquer this disease.
Join TEAM LEVINE CT and let’s LACE UP. WALK. and CURE CYSTIC FIBROSIS.
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