Finley, lymphoma survivor
This June, Subaru, its retailers, and The Leukemia & Lymphoma Society (LLS) are teaming up to spread love, warmth and hope to those fighting cancer. Through the Subaru Loves to Care initiative, LLS chapters will join participating Subaru retailers to deliver 38,000 blankets and messages of hope to cancer patients across the country, as well as donate nearly 500 arts & crafts kits to children battling the disease.
Subaru and LLS are bringing to life the Loves to Care initiative in 476 Subaru retailers across the country.
A week after Finley’s fifth birthday, her mom took her to the doctor’s office to check what she thought was a bad case of strep throat and a high fever. Finley was sent to the hospital to undergo further testing, including an x-ray and biopsy. Shortly after, she was diagnosed with non-Hodgkin lymphoma.
The week after Finley’s diagnosis, she remained in the hospital and started chemotherapy. In the following months, she underwent multiple tests and countless hospital visits, many including overnight stays. The side effects of her treatment would be unbearable for most, but Finley pulled through and amazed everyone with her bravery.
In June 2016, Finley was officially in remission. She currently takes her medication at home and visits the hospital once a month for maintenance checkups. Today, Finley enjoys playing baseball, reading and crafts, and loves the outdoors. She is a huge fan of superheroes and even had a superhero cake for her birthday. As her parents said, “Finley is our real life superhero.”
To read more messages of hope, please click here.
On December 24, 2014, Stan Anders, General Manager of Coconut Creek Subaru, heard the words no parent wants to hear: “Your son has cancer.” Zachary was 19 years old and attending Florida State University when he was diagnosed with Hodgkin Lymphoma. He started treatment immediately at Sylvester Cancer Center. Zachary endured many rounds of chemotherapy and radiation. Today, Zachary is in remission and back at FSU. With LLS’s Southern FL Chapter, Zachary and Stan returned to Sylvester Cancer Center to deliver warm blankets and messages of hope. They were thankful for the opportunity to provide other patients with comfort and support and let them know they are not alone.
Besides delivering blankets and care cards for the Loves to Care initiative, Tucson Subaru took community engagement a step further by holding an event at the dealership to build bicycles for local children fighting cancer. The retailer invited customers, employees and their families to form teams to build the bikes, each customized for a patient at the local children's hospital. The event was a win-win for the patients and their families, Tucson Subaru and all of the volunteers--everyone loved it! Tucson Subaru continues to give back to the community, recently signing on as a presenting sponsor for LLS's Student of the Year campaign.
Lithia Subaru of Fresno and LLS’s Central CA Chapter delivered warm blankets along with 140 messages of hope to patients receiving treatment at CCare (California Cancer Associates for Research & Excellence). LLS Board members, staff and honored patients later gathered at the dealership to deliver a thank you message to Subaru. Fourteen-year-old cancer survivor Christopher posed for this photo and he and his twin brother Alex were thrilled by the General Manager’s offer to take them on a test drive in their favorite Subaru. Kindness clearly comes naturally at Subaru!
When Young Subaru and LLS's Utah Chapter went to Ogden Regional Hospital’s Cancer Treatment Center, General Manager Tyson Walker went above and beyond by personally delivering blankets and offering words of encouragement and smiles to patients undergoing treatment. “Having had a grandfather pass from cancer, it was awesome to be able to pay it forward,” remarked Tyson. “A blanket to us might not be much but to these patients it can mean everything and making their day was such a humbling experience. Cancer affects all of our lives and for Subaru to run a program that makes a difference just shows their commitment to being different and truly caring.”
Together Crews Subaru of Charleston, LLS's South Carolina Chapter, and LLS Girl of the Year Rachel Darling delivered blankets and care cards to cancer patients at MUSC Hollings Cancer Center. The Crews Subaru team and LLS spread much joy, support and hope to the patients. Rachel exchanged "war" stories with a cancer survivor at the hospital; together they shared their strength and courage to put an end to cancer!
The Lawrence & Memorial Cancer Center received their Love Promise Care Packages from Holmgren Subaru of North Franklin, CT and LLS's CT/Westchester Hudson Valley Chapter. The Social Worker broke down in tears upon receiving the blankets and care cards. She couldn't believe that they were receiving this incredibly generous donation. It was a genuine testament to Subaru’s promise of community involvement.
LLS Ambassador Terri Oakes, wife of former University of Minnesota Gopher Baseball pitching coach Todd Oakes (pictured with his family), and Erica Warlick, MD, Coach Oakes’ oncologist, accepted 120 blankets from Morrie’s Brooklyn Park Subaru and LLS’s Minnesota Chapter for patients being treated at the University of Minnesota Masonic Cancer Clinic. Coach Oakes lost his battle with acute myeloid leukemia in May 2016, a tragic loss for the team, university and cancer advocacy community. To commemorate Coach Oakes’ legacy, representatives of the UMN baseball team hand delivered the blankets along with cards written by Subaru customers offering hope and support to cancer patients. Oakes was a local LLS Board member and had recently been announced as a national award-winning volunteer. He was loved by many and known for his never-give-up attitude. Many tears were shed during the blanket delivery by his family, friends, and doctor, but they all agreed this generous act by Morrie’s Brooklyn Park Subaru would have made Todd so happy. Giving back and taking care of others was what he was all about. Morrie's Brooklyn Park went further by selecting LLS's MN Chapter as their hometown charity for Subaru's Share the Love program, resulting in a donation of over $50,000 to support LLS’s mission. Thank you!
Help The Leukemia & Lymphoma Society and Subaru spread messages of hope, love, and warmth to cancer patients across the country.