Friday, August 28, 2009

WEEI/ NESN Jimmy Fund Radio Telethon

I'm listenintg to the Dennis & Callhan show on WEEI and they're doing the 8th anual Jimmy Fund Radio Telethon to benifit cancer research. I've never listened to WEEI before, save when I tune in nightly to listen to the Sox games. Well, its 8:00 in the morning, and I almost broke down and cried. I mean, I'm suprised I kept it togother. I was listening to Ben Finer, who is 13 and just found out yesterday that his cancer took a turn for the worse. 13 years old and he was diagnosed with cancer. 13 years old, and his life could very well end. I'm listening to this kid, and he's not woried about himself at all. I won't remember his exact words, but he said he was okay with dying and didn't care what happened to him, but he was deathly afraid of what happened to his family and said that they would go downhill if Ben left his family. Seriously, it was the most touching thing I have ever heard. The link to the respective bits on the show is here, and the interview with Ben and his dad is the sixth clip over and is titled "D&C with Ben Finer and his dad Ron." If you get a chance, take a listen, it will give you a new perspective on life. I also listened to Cameron Riley, who was also diagnosed as a 13 year old (he's the first clip, tilted D&C with Cameron Riley with his dad Jason.) You can hear just the sheer joy the Jimmy Fund gives these kids through the programs they provide, the trips to Spring training and such. I watched some of the Ben Finer interview and the kid's just in such great spirits despite his grave condition, its unbelievable. I mean, its a real shame this terrible disease happens to kids who have their whole lives out in front of them only to have it all taken away.

Life is short, but it should be long enough. But its a shame for these kids, that life isn't long enough. Maybe that doesn't make sense, but that's okay; you can't put a disease this malicious into words. You know, I once heard that a disease like cancer doesn't discriminate. Rich, poor, old, young- it doesn't matter, which is what makes it so tragic. We all think we're so badly done to, but so often that's not the case. Most of us will never have to have to have chemo three times a week, most of us will never have a timeline put on our lifespan, most of us will never at thirteen years old, be not afraid to die; most of us will never have the words "there's no hope" spoken to us. Kind of makes that guy who cut in front of you during your run this morning feel meaningless. Life is so fragile, and I don't think enough people underststand that. Until you've had something life threatining happen to you, you don't understand that the gift you have can be gone in a second. We are all so blessed.


  1. Matt, you have no idea how much you hit the nail on the head about Ben Finer's interview. There were probably about a thousand sports fans commuting this morning who started crying listening to that interview. Only hope that you were able to donate what you could to the Jimmy Fund. I have two healthy kids but way too much experience with the Dana Farber Center through my wife's family over the last 10 years to brush off the work that the Jimmy Fund does out here (and by extension, over the rest of the country through their breaktrhoughs in cancer research).

    If that impacted you, just imagine what it will do when you have kids of your own someday.

  2. Mike, of course I donated. I wont say how much, but since I'm in college, it wasn't a whole lot. I guess I'm at a loss. Its terrible that thousands of people- thousands of kids- have their lives taken away from them prematurely and for seemingly no reason at all. At the same time, its amazing that Cancer remains a mystery the way medical technology is going these days. But doctors truly are miracle workers, I can attest to that.

    Keep the Faith.

  3. Good for you Matt. Surprised that the Twins haven't tried partnering with Mayo Clinic, or maybe this is just such a longstanding and unique relationship between the Red Sox and Dana Farber. Every little bit helps (I know I didn't have a heckuva lot of money in college either!)