Following our “Survivors on Snowshoes” outing, several of us drove directly to the “Hunting for a Cure” Fundraising Event that was taking place at Laack’s Hall about ten miles away! A GREAT morning led directly into a GREAT rest of the day!!!
Special thanks to John Uttech, founder of “Hunting for a Cure”! Although the final totals are not in, John is expecting this year’s total funds raised to exceed $40,000! Thanks also to the dedicated group of individuals that plan this event, the many volunteers, donors, participants and sponsors that, together, make this event such a success!
Everyone I have spoken to who has attended this event has commented about what a great event it is and how well-organized it is! The day is filled with good food, great raffles, a wide variety of silent auction items, live music... and just a lot of good and kind-hearted people coming together to support a meaningful cause! If you missed it this year... watch for it next January!
This year they invited a local cancer survivor to share her story. It is an interesting paradox! As much as I hate cancer... as much as we all hate cancer... I consider some of the stories that often come out of a cancer experience to be some of the greatest treasures of this life! Here is Kate’s beautifully prepared story:
My name is Kate Ratajczak, I was asked to say a little something about myself and how the Sheboygan County Cancer Care Fund affected me and my family.
October of 2016, my husband and I were expecting our 3rd child. I was 13 weeks pregnant when I was diagnosed with stage 2 breast cancer. Two weeks after I was diagnosed, I had a double mastectomy. I started chemotherapy in December when I was 21 weeks pregnant, had 4 rounds of chemotherapy and then had a healthy baby girl, we named Maeve, on April 6, 2017. After I had Maeve, I had 12 additional rounds of chemotherapy. I am thankful to be standing here to tell of my story of survival. God has blessed us so richly by giving me 3 years since diagnosis, 3 healthy children, 1 of which was a little miracle.
The Ratajczak Family (pictured above): Kate (far right) and her husband Jake who is holding daughter Maeve (2 years old) with daughter Nora (6 years old) and son Finn (11 years old).
I had no known risk factors for cancer and so this was something that was far from my mind. We were preparing to welcome a 3rd child into our family and not figuring on the financial burden of multiple surgeries and chemotherapy treatments.
A co-worker (a “Survive, Thrive & Be Fit” survivor-athlete) had informed me of the Cancer Care Fund. She told me of all the wonderful things they had done for her and that I should reach out. I reached out to Tim Renzelmann and he responded with “we are here to help you if you need us.” A few months into my treatments, finances became an issue. I was unable to breast feed because of the mastectomy. I was able to provide donated breast milk to Maeve but needed to supplement with formula as well. Formula was a cost we hadn’t thought of. The Sheboygan County Cancer Fund assisted us with diapers and formula while I was having chemotherapy and not working. What a blessing!
During treatments we had both of our cars requiring work and our oldest needed extensive dental work all in one week. I was so discouraged. I called Tim and they were able to help us with one of the vehicle bills which was such a relief. Since my treatments I have been trying to spread the word on SCCCF. Sheboygan County is blessed to have this program. Not many counties have such a wonderful program available to its residents.
I also want to put in a plug for the “Survive, Thrive and Be Fit” program. Tim put together a program to help survivors stay active in both body and mind. He informed me that as of last year 44 survivors have earned a spot on the team – and I was one of them. There are many activities every month in which you can participate (yoga, rowing, pickleball, races or walks, etc). If you chose to exercise on your own, you get points per 30 minutes of activity. This shirt was earned by participation in physical activity. Last year I ran a few 5Ks (one with the SCCCF) but also ran my first ½ marathon. This pushed me to become more active and is something I hope to continue.
If you or someone you know is going through cancer treatments OR if you are a cancer survivor and wish to be a part of this team, please reach out to Tim!
“HUNTING FOR A CURE” SPONSORS
J&M Professional Services l Wisconsin Plastic Products l Kohler l Johnsonville Sausage l Larry’s Distributing l Dave Rautmann l Habush, Habush & Rottier, SC l Todd Smith / Pleasant View Reality l Optimum Electric l Bank First National l Kissel Construction l Haley Kamerselt Photography l Stew Cannon Auctions / Drake Farms l Venado, Inc. l Sauk Trail Conservation Club l Stuckmann Construction l Staudemeyers Four Season Resort l Stantec l Sheboygan Roosted Gobblers l Nyhoff Insulation l Advanced Disposal l Flipse Insurance l Vandervaart Concrete Products l Jacobchick Family l Docs Custom Crank Baits l Finfanatic Charters l Advanced Whitetail Hunting l Serenity Farms Landscaping l Badger State Restoration l Aldag Honald Mechanical l Rudnick Jewelers l Solu Winery l Thunder Auto l Majerles Black River Grill l Chicago Best Meats l Laacks Hall l Kevin & Laurie Claerbaut l Stecker Construction l Luedtke Electric l Daane Ace Hardware l BW Papersystems l Joose Trucking l Cruise Control Driving School, LLC l Ron Bruggink Memorial Fund l Carol Lammers Memorial Fund l Shorty Hofftiezer Memorial Fund
Gibbsville Implement l Old Wisconsin l KW Electric l Carla Woepse Photography l Milwaukee Brewers l Town & Country Golf Course l Bowl Dog Woodturning l Festival Foods l Gosse’s at the Northwestern House l Ian and Stephanie Uteck l Jill & Rich Lohr l Luke Launer l Tangerine Salon l Mike DePagter Plumbing l From Family Foods l Matt & Sarah Poker l Waldo Implement l Pheasants @ Large l Ermer’s Sawmill LLC
Sharp Edge Salon l United Building Supply l Nyhoff Custom Gutter l Oostburg Financial l Legend Larrys l Darlene & Jim VanEss l Jen & Troy Hilbelink l Lakeshore Chinooks l Dairyland Seed l Competitive Plumbing l Sydack Masonry l Chris & Julie Loebel l Ron & Mary Cook l Bob & Carla Utech l Neumann Plumbing & Heating l Marjorie Bruggink l Falls Tap and 4th St. Tap l Franklin House l Racers Hall l Beavers Recycled Signs