​​​Retiree Relishing Life After Advanced Kidney Cancer Treatment 

The last thing Alan Rubin imagined he’d be doing after retiring from a successful career in financial services was helping his son run a hot dog cart.   Then he was diagnosed with stage III kidney cancer, and found himself in another unexpected locale: Dana-Farber Brigham Cancer Center. Like the decision to join his son’s business … Read more

Tailored Treatment and Support for Older Adults with Breast Cancer 

The trip from Nantucket to Boston, involving a long drive and ferry ride, is an arduous four-hour journey (not counting summer traffic). But when Nantucket resident and retired educator, Claudia Kilvert, was diagnosed with breast cancer, she committed to regularly getting in the car with her husband and 80-pound golden retriever Luna to get treatment … Read more

Lessons From a Lawyer Living with Ovarian Cancer 

Jennifer Thorn has worked hard her whole life running a family law practice and raising her family, but in April 2021, just as she began to enjoy her success, she faced a new challenge.  After experiencing pain while lying on her side, Thorn, 48, of Wilbraham, Massachusetts, visited her primary care physician who ordered bloodwork … Read more

Young Adult Cancer Patients Prove Powerful Advocates in Washington D.C.

Cancer has not stopped Bethany Ross and Jeremy Pivor from undertaking numerous adventures, from Pivor’s sailing trips on the high seas to Bethany’s forays into skydiving and outdoor rock climbing. It is also often the catalyst for their actions, such as when both Dana-Farber Brigham Cancer Center patients headed to Washington, D.C. to advocate on … Read more

Follicular Lymphoma Patient Has Time On His Side After CAR T-Cell Therapy 

After nearly nine years of living with follicular lymphoma, a type of non-Hodgkin lymphoma (NHL), it took just a few minutes for things to change dramatically for Marc Cummings this spring.   That was all the time needed to transfer the small bag of modified CAR T-cells — which had been recrafted from Cummings’ own T … Read more

Colon Cancer Patient with Anxiety and Panic Disorders Finds Support — and Passes it On  

Two weeks after turning 50, Wendy Tamis Robbins learned she had stage II colon cancer. Having lived with anxiety, obsessive compulsive disorder, and panic disorders nearly all her life, she used the same strategies that helped her navigate these struggles to meet her cancer diagnosis head-on.  Robbins handled the ups and downs of her summer … Read more

Patient is First at Dana-Farber to Undergo Outpatient Stem Cell Transplant for Myeloma 

In most ways, Bill Ross’s stem cell transplant for multiple myeloma at Dana-Farber Brigham Cancer Center (DFBCC) wasn’t out of the ordinary. He received chemotherapy to destroy the tumor cells in his body and then an infusion of his own hematopoietic stem cells, which flocked to his bone marrow and regenerated his blood supply. Over … Read more

Living with Recurrent Ovarian Cancer, Celebrity Chef Writes a New Recipe 

As a cast member on the television series “America’s Test Kitchen,” and host of its companion podcast “The Walk-In,” Elle Simone Scott delights in sharing her expertise and recipes. The Boston-based celebrity chef and food stylist is also a role model, as founder and president of SheChef, Inc., a professional networking organization for fellow women … Read more

Finding Reason to Laugh with Metastatic Breast Cancer 

By Valerie Frank Ever since I can remember, I’ve made people laugh. ​​I was always the funny friend, and when I was in my mid-20s I made it official by becoming a Main Stage cast member of ImprovBoston — an improvisational comedy theater in Cambridge, MA. Once I retired from improv to become a suburban … Read more

Living with Metastatic Breast Cancer, Mother is Given a Chance to Raise Her Son 

Just over a year after giving birth to her son, Emmett, Abigail Myers faced a devastating diagnosis of breast cancer in March 2014.   It started when Myers woke up one morning feeling sore. When she found a lump, she rushed to her doctor, all the while in disbelief that she might have cancer.  A resident … Read more

Clinical Trial Offers Lessons for Patient and Researchers 

When the time came for Jeffrey Ferreira to undergo a stem cell transplant for acute myeloid leukemia (AML), his Dana-Farber hematologist, Corey Cutler, MD, MPH, had some intriguing news: he was eligible for a clinical trial of a new approach to lowering the risk of chronic graft-versus-host disease (GVHD), a common and sometimes severe aftereffect … Read more

Young-Onset Colorectal Cancer Patients Advocate Education and Early Screening 

For close to a year, Melanie Spears had been experiencing abdominal pain and constipation. As an Army veteran who had served in Afghanistan, she was used to pushing through adversity — so she tweaked her diet and dealt with what doctors diagnosed as irritable bowel syndrome. Only after microscopic blood samples in her stool led … Read more

Father with Stage IV Kidney Cancer Enjoys Wedding of a Lifetime

When Chuck Stravin was diagnosed with renal cell carcinoma in 2015, one of his biggest fears was not living long enough to see his four young daughters get married. The disease later metastasized to his lungs as stage IV cancer, but thanks to groundbreaking clinical trials and a care team he considers family, Stravin is … Read more

Living with Metastatic Breast Cancer, Valentines Ferry On

At first, Joy Mills and Arthur “Buck” Benedict look like any other happy, older couple traveling by ferry from their home on Peaks Island, Maine, to Portland. Admiring the beautiful views, they sit outside when weather permits. They laugh, chat with friends, and occasionally needle each other during the 18-minute trip.  Once a month, the … Read more

Treatment Advances and Perfect Partners Give Pancreatic Cancer Patient ‘Gift of Time’

After losing her first husband of 30 years to cancer, Candace “Candy” Langford felt blessed to find love again. And when she learned six weeks after her June 2018 wedding that she had locally advanced pancreatic cancer, shock blended with sorrow — because she knew her new life partner had also been down that road … Read more

Metastatic Prostate Cancer Can’t Slow Down Grandfather

Doug Kroc taught social studies for 40 years, but these days the retiree is more interested in making history than teaching it. Not the kind of events found in textbooks, but simple moments spent swimming and kayaking with his family or riding his bike along the backroads of Vermont. So when Kroc, 70, developed a … Read more