This year Team Lusk is looking forward to contributing to another Great Strides Walk for a Cure for Cystic Fibrosis.
In 1994, cystic fibrosis (CF) first touched our family when our daughter, Erin, was diagnosed with CF soon after her birth. In November of 1996, our second daughter, Colleen, was born and immediately diagnosed with CF.
As many of you know, Colleen passed away on October 24, 2013 from cystic fibrosis. She would have turned 22 years old last November 18. Colleen fought bravely through many obstacles including a collapsed lung, multiple vertebrae fractures, a clotting disorder, diabetes requiring daily injections, numerous picc lines, and a gastrostomy tube. Through it all Colleen maintained a positive attitude and a strong desire to live life to its fullest. She actively participated on her high school Speech & Debate team and appeared in several high school plays and musicals. We miss Colleen every minute of every day but we take solace in knowing that she can finally breathe easy and be free of all the pain she endured because of her CF.
Erin turned 26 years old in March. She graduated from Indiana University’s School of Education in 2017 where she was the undergraduate speaker at IU’s School of Education convocation ceremony during graduation weekend. Erin is now in her second year of teaching 1st Grade at Elliott Elementary School in Munster (where her dad went to school!). Erin loves her career as a teacher, her students, and her co-workers. We couldn’t be more proud of her!
Erin continues to require numerous daily medications, chest physical therapy two times per day, and daily nebulizer treatments. Each day, Erin also needs to take about 50 pills. She will continue all of these treatments for the rest of her life. Erin’s bravery and Colleen’s legacy continue to be an inspiration to our entire family and community.
CF is a genetic disorder that causes the accumulation of thick mucus in the lungs and around the pancreas, causing suffocation and infection. It is fatal and there is no cure. Over the past several years, the progress that has been made toward finding a cure and treating the disorder have been amazing. Three years ago, a new drug, Orkambi, became available that treats CF at the cellular level. Erin is taking this drug and it has increased her quality of life amazingly. We believe that the cure we are seeking is close, but we must continue to fund the research, which has already brought us this far.
2020 will be the 26th year that TEAM LUSK has supported the Cystic Fibrosis Foundation’s Great Strides Walk for a cure for CF. To date TEAM LUSK alone has raised over $575,000 for the fight against Cystic Fibrosis. With the support of our family and friends we hope to continue in our fight against Cystic Fibrosis.
Please support TEAM LUSK in raising funds to fight CF.
This is a very serious cause for which we are working. With your help, we will continue to fight in honor of Colleen and for Erin’s future. Please help us and the 40,000 other people with CF in this country by supporting TEAM LUSK.
With Love and Gratitude,
Hal, Suzanne, Erin & our angel Colleen