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My Dad; My Hero

Posted on March 25 2017

My Dad; My Hero
Why I'm participating in the 2017 Light the Night - Boise, Idaho

I am participating in Light the Night because this year I was personally touched by cancer. People always think, "No, cancer will never get me," because it is true, most people do not believe that they would acquire cancer in their lifetime. I know because I am one of those people with that same thinking, or rather 'I was'. Growing up I never knew of anyone that had cancer. Incidentally, I am not aware of anyone who sets up a cancer savings fund, just in case.

Then in 2005, my father-in-law contracted the worst kind of brain cancer. I remember feeling sort of a panicky feeling in the beginning as his doctor informed us that he had a mere 3-6 months, at most, to live. However, I believe that due to his remarkable outlook on life and his illness, that God gifted him three more years of life!

Life continued on, years passed by and things transpired; life went on to exist, until March of 2016, my dad became very ill with a variety of odd symptoms. He was living in and out of the hospital. His symptoms consisted of severe arm, leg, elbow, chest pain, high fevers, internal bleeding and coughing up blood. They fixed the internal bleeding and sent him home with a misdiagnoses of bacterial pneumonia, where his condition worsened by the days and months.

The doctors, baffled by my dad's mysterious symptoms, finally decided to perform a bone marrow biopsy FOUR months later, where they discovered tons of cancer cells. That day they diagnosed Dad with Acute Myeloid Leukemia. It had finally hit home, especially since he and I were so close. I remember that I was at my mom’s house when my husband came to tell me of the bad news. As fast as I could, I got up without shoes on, and ran and ran, until finally collapsing to the ground.

I looked up toward the sky and asked God, “Why?” “So much tragedy has happened in my life, why would you allow my father to get such an illness,” but you see, after a lot of pondering, I discovered it wasn’t about me, but it was about my dad and his journey and what I could do to help. I had just recently chosen to try to reconcile my relationship with God after many years. I just needed to remember that God does allow miracles to happen and to not let my anger get in the way.

I am extremely sad to say that my father lost his battle to AML. He is now at peace. I recall his wife had texted my sister and I early on the morning of August 24th, 2016 to tell us to hurry and get there. I unfortunately missed saying an official goodbye, as he was already gone by the time I arrived. Therefore, I walked into his house and just rested on the bedside next to him, held his hand and sobbed. A couple of days before he passed, he told me what a great job that I was doing for The Leukemia and Lymphoma Society, handed me a $500.00 donation check and asked me to continue the fight of all fights, in his honor, as well as all of the others.

This is why raising funds for blood cancers is so very important to me, because I want a cure found so nobody else has to endure such a tragic situation. I want to help save lives, because to me, your life is a gift from God. So one might ask, “How do we cure cancer?” The answer is, “DONATE.” My father is my biggest hero!

I won't ever stop until there is better funding for research, more research centers and better patient quality of life! I also made him promises on things in my life that I would change and I am working hard on them, for I want him to smile down upon me. We never know what tomorrow can bring our way, therefore, we should not judge, but rather love. I now realize that perhaps I didn't have it so bad off before with my health conditions or other things, as compared to others' struggles. I have gained much admiration for cancer survivors and their families.

Why I am fundraising:

By raising funds and walking in The Light the Night walk event, I am participating in the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society's lifesaving mission and I would really appreciate your support! The funds I raise helps fund important cancer research, supports cancer patient programs and services, and goes toward other important activities that help save lives from cancer.

Why I volunteer with The Leukemia & Lymphoma Society:

By walking in a Light the Night event, I join more than one million global volunteers who are dedicated to finishing the fight against cancer. This is my opportunity to honor the cancer survivors in my life, remember friends and family I have lost, and to raise funds to support The Leukemia & Lymphoma Society's lifesaving mission.

Please join my team or make a donation in support of my efforts. Together, we WILL finish the fight! I WILL ALWAYS WORK to finish my dad's battle...until my last breath is taken.

All the best,

Kelly Caufield

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“A Tribute to my Dad”

Dear Dad,

Do you wish to know the biggest thing that gets me through the days, with you no longer in my earthly life? It’s my thought of knowing and believing that you now exist in a beautiful place. A place which I believe in my heart and mind, where you are freed of your pain, where you can continue your game of golf (and having your glass of wine at the eighteenth hole) and watch B.S.U. play on one of Heaven’s big screen t.v.’s.

It eases the severe pain in what is left of my heart, that you are able to be together again with you loved one’s whom passed before you. The only thing that I question is if you are able to feel sadness where you are, because if that is so, I would surely have no heart left.

I feel happy at the fact that God chose for us to be father and daughter. You’ve taught me a great deal about life and its’ lesson’s. You tried to instill in me the importance of working and holding down a job in order to help out in my marriage and have a future savings. After letting you down many times in that department, I now see the big picture.
Therefore, I vowed after you died that I would no longer let you down. I am now working for the hospital full time and volunteering the rest of my time working with The Leukemia & Lymphoma Society of Boise.

I miss you on a daily basis, your smile, our lunch dates, our conversations and sitting in your back porch watching the finches perform their acrobats. I miss everything about you, Dad. Great, now here come the tears filling up my eyes. Missing you is difficult in so many ways.

I thank you for being the best father a girl could ever ask for and I’m so terribly sorry for ever letting you down. As I now end, I wanted to ask one favor of you. Please greet my best friend, Zoey dog, when she crosses the Rainbow Bridge and don’t ever let her out of your arms.

Dad, I love you with all that I have inside of me. I will go on to make you proud. Please always stay by my side, pushing me as I strive to climb mountains.

Love Always & Forever,

Your daughter, Kelly

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