The Conrow Family
When you have five young children, minor illnesses — think a case of the sniffles or a 24-hour stomach bug — are pretty much par for the course. So when three-year-old Amanda Conrow starting vomiting one day in September of 2012, parents Paul and Liz weren’t particularly concerned. But her symptoms persisted, leading the Conrows to seek medical attention. A few weeks later, they got the news: Amanda had ependymoma, a cancer of the brain and central nervous system.
“YOU KNOW NOTHING WHEN YOUR CHILD IS DIAGNOSED,” SAYS LIZ, “AND THEN YOU GET AN EDUCATION YOU DON’T WANT.”
Providing guidance and companionship as the Conrows learned these painful lessons was C.U.R.E.’s Parent Advocate.
“HER PRESENCE ALONE WAS SUCH A COMFORT,” REMEMBERS LIZ. “SHE WAS SO WARM AND CARING.”
In Spring 2013, doctors had told Amanda’s family that their daughter would only live for another 12 months, but her bravery in battling cancer bought the family 18 precious months together. She died at home, in her sleep, and cradled by her father’s arms on February 8, 2015.
After Amanda’s death, the family found solace in C.U.R.E.’s bereavement support group, and in reaching out to other parents struggling with a cancer diagnosis.
“WE WENT BACK TO HELP OTHERS BUT ALSO FOR OURSELVES, AND IT’S BEEN REALLY BENEFICIAL. JUST SHARING OUR STORIES, LETTING THEM KNOW THEY ARE NOT ALONE. AND NONE OF THAT COULD HAVE HAPPENED WITHOUT C.U.R.E.”