Fighting Cancer, One Step at a Time
The story of one Easton resident who is walking in honor of his wife’s battle with cancer
Walking 26.2 miles all at once sounds quite daunting, but Easton resident Mark Vinocoor is going to do it on September 18th. However, he is walking with a purpose; Vinocoor is participating in the Boston Marathon Jimmy Fund Walk to support the Dana Farber Cancer Institute.
His wife of almost 17 years, Lisa, was diagnosed with Thymic Carcinoma, at the end of last year. When Mark saw an advertisement for the walk, he knew it was something he needed to do.
“I was doing my daily walk on my treadmill and saw an advertisement for the Jimmy Fund/Dana Faber Marathon Walk to raise money for cancer research. After seeing the advertisement, I knew that this is something that I strongly believe in, raising money for cancer research and the Dana Faber seemed like a no brainer to me, and I decided then that this is something I wanted to do” Mark explained.
Lisa’s cancer is rare and not much is known about it. She is a patient at Dana Farber, and has been receiving treatment there since the end of last year. The cancer, after spreading to her lungs and diaphragm, responded as one would hope it would to a full round of chemo therapy.
The Doctors at Dana Farber then suggested surgery to remove any remaining cancer that lingered after the chemo. Her surgeons are optimistic and feel the surgery was successful. Mark went on to say “There is not a lot known about her type of cancer, in doing this fundraiser it feels good to know that this may help the overall cause of someday finding a cure for cancer. More treatment is going to be needed, and this follow up care will also be done at the Dana Faber. I have every bit of confidence in the Dana Faber! I am very impressed with the level of care that they continue to provide her. I think that they are amazing and that the Dana Faber is truly a special place. I love my wife Lisa and do not want to see anything happen to her.”
So why walk 26.2 miles and not just help raise money for cancer research? Mark felt the need to literally walk the walk. “In general I have found cancer to be a very frustrating and grey disease. Everyone is always telling me that we need to take things one step at a time. I am taking this advice literally and will be walking the 26.2 mile route, one step at a time, by placing one foot in front of the other. The focus on training for this walk, and in raising a lot of money for the Dana Faber and cancer research, is also keeping me grounded while my wife Lisa and I are fighting this disease.”
Mark is taking the hands on approach to fighting cancer, doing everything he is capable of doing in order to help find a cure. Mentally, this battle can be draining for everyone involved. Physically, he has been training his body to prepare for the challenge by walking four miles a day, increasing the distance as Septemeber 18th gets closer and closer.
Lisa and Mark have 2 children, Lily (14 years old) and Gabby (10 years old) and the couple have lived in Easton for twelve years. Their 17th wedding anniversary is coming up on August 21st and it is obvious how important family is to Mark. While he is walking alone, he has many supporters.
“I am basically doing this walk on my own, some family and friends have volunteered to walk portions with me to keep me company, however the fund raising and the main walk is all me. I am and have been looking to family and friends of ours to donate to this walk. Raising money for the Dana Faber and cancer research is most important to me, as is walking in honor of my wife Lisa. It has a very special meaning to me,” he said.
Mark has raised (so far) $1,657! The Easton Community has been instrumental in helping raise money for this walk and donating to Mark’s cause. “The community of Easton has already been very supportive. To name some: The Easton Lions Club (another organization that is very close to my heart), FORE, Temple Chayai Shalom, and Dance Express all of Easton, MA.
Donations will gratefully be accepted up until the day of the walk, September 18th, and can be made in two ways: you can either follow the link provided to Mark’s walk site and use a credit card for your donation:
or a check can be made out to:
Boston Marathon® Jimmy Fund Walk. These checks can be sent to my home address at:
158 Highland St.
South Easton, MA 02375