Voices Against Brain Cancer was started in loving memory of Gary Lichtenstein who lost his valiant battle with brain cancer on October 1, 2003. Gary was living in Chicago and working as an options trader at Wolverine Trading when he was diagnosed with a brain tumor in March of 2003. He was 24 years old at the time. After three months of radiation, Gary slipped into a coma from which he did not recover. Soon after his passing, Gary’s family started Voices Against Brain Cancer to raise money and awareness for the fight against this horrible disease.
Gary wasn’t afraid of anything. He truly believed he could beat his brain tumor and he made so many of his friends and family members believe that too. Courage and faith are contagious, and during that brief time when Gary was living with cancer, he helped redefine those words for all of those that were so close to him. Instead of hiding in a corner and cowering from it, Gary embraced life with a vigor that made everyone smile and believe. Instead of succumbing to hopelessness, he made each day feel like a gift from God. There was no time to fear, or to be sad, because there was just too much to do.
It is with this spirit that Voices Against Brain Cancer pushes for research and novel treatments for brain tumors. Gary was a compassionate and good-natured son, brother and friend, with a bright future ahead of him. Although we could not save Gary from cancer, perhaps this Foundation can save the lives of some of the thousands that will be diagnosed this year, and save their families from the extreme pain and sadness that the Lichtenstein family has endured. The work of this Foundation will continue the legacy of courage, persistence, and determination begun by its namesake.
Glioblastoma is the most aggressive and most common type of brain cancer, attacking approximately 40,000 people each year. It is the leading cause of cancer-related death among children and the second leading cause of cancer-related death among males aged 20 – 39. Just 8.2% of all patients diagnosed with Glioblastoma survive more than two years after the initial diagnosis. Despite these horrific statistics, progress is being made towards a cure. However, much more work needs to be done to eradicate this illness and the devastation it leaves behind.
Over the past 30 years, very little progress has been made to treat brain tumors. Only with cutting-edge scientific research and funding of clinical trials will we be able to effectively fight against this disease. Voices Against Brain Cancer promotes this type of research within the medical community by working with those doctors that are committed to curing and treating brain tumors.
VABC holds events all over the country in an effort to fundraise towards their goal of finding a cure for brain cancer and brain tumors. In 2013 alone, these events helped VABC raise over $1.5 million!
Coming up on the VABC calendar, you will find:
The mission of Voices Against Brain Cancer is to find a cure for brain cancer by advancing scientific research, increasing awareness within the medical community, and supporting patients, their families, and caregivers afflicted with this devastating disease. Check out Voices Against Brain Cancer on facebook and twitter. Raise your voice and join with us in the fight against brain cancer. Together we can make a difference!