“Help Me To Stand”
Helping a cancer victim at both the individual or community level requires two things – PLAN and COMMITMENT. The physician takes a history, carries out an examination, orders tests, establishes a diagnosis and then lays out a treatment plan. At the community level there are plans aimed at bringing about public awareness of early warning signs of cancer, literature and public events like the breast cancer walk. However, no matter how exacting the physicians prescription or the community cancer efforts, a PLAN without COMMITMENT is incomplete.
Commitment is the force that arises between the individual cancer patient and physician or between many cancer victims and the public . Commitment arises from an emotional, non-verbal level. It arises form individual or group subconsciousness – from empathizing or understanding the individual torment of a cancer vicim faced with overwhelming despair, suffering and struggle.
Commitment to the cancer patient both individually and collectively causes us to build a new $60,000,000 Everett Cancer Center as described tonight by Elie Saikaly M.D., Director of the new Everett Cancer Center or to develop CyberKnife Technology that will be explained by Marc Mayberg M.D., Medical Co-Director with Sandy Vermeulen M.D. of the Seattle CyberKnife Center or to carry out research protocols and innovate new genetic and genomic research such as that represented by Greg Foltz M.D. and by our Key Note Speaker, Leroy Hood M.D. PhD.
Probably no one knows better this state of mind or this feeling of experiencing overwhelming odds than some of those 350,000 people in need of food, clothing, shelter and other services that call the Volunteers of America. Just ask Gil Saparto, CEO/President of the Volunteers of America for 40 years – or Phil Smith, the current Director of Communications for Volunteers of America – both of whom are with us this evening.
Just ask Fred Taucher, CEO/President of Corporate Computer, about commitment. Sixty years ago. he was a very frightened young boy packed into a railroad car with Russian soldiers passing through the gates of the Dachau concentration camp during the Holocaust. Had the Russian soldiers not helped him to stand, he would have been one of those trampled to death.
Just ask some of the newly diagnosed cancer patients or ten year cancer survivors that are amongst tonight’s guests about commitment.
All around the training room at Accuray Headquarters are large photographs – FACES – faces of cancer victims along with a caption containing a few words how the CyberKnife had spared their life. Why the faces and not just the text message? Because Accuray President Euan Thompson wants us to feel the committment to treat cancer and not just understand it from words or didactic lectures alone.
To help us comprehend feelings beyond understanding we have with us tonight from Las Vegas, a master of non-verbal communication, Mr. Dehner Franks.
A couple of years ago Dehner Franks was asked to write a song for the Volunteers of America to fit with their mission statement – “to reach out and uplift”. To this request Dehner wrote a song entitled “Help Me To Stand”. But – it just so happened that Dehner’s wife was dying of breast cancer metastatic to her brain during this time. Therefore, song writing intended for a very specific purpose, became a unique song that transcended its intended purpose and turned into an expressive masterpiece. This song, titled “Help Me To Stand” became a profound, Universal Plea for help of a personal, social or spiritual nature.
Let’s allow ourselves, musically speaking, to ‘crawl’ into the mind of this family member of a cancer victim so that this evening we can all briefly experience these universal feelings from which we create the commitment needed to help cancer victims.
Please note that Anita Franks, age 43, died of breast cancer metastatic to the brain February 3, 2005 without ever hearing her husbands song, “Help Me To Stand” performed.
Victoria Burnett, who sings “Help Me To Stand” is a two times breast cancer survivor. Her husband divorced her and many of those that she loved left her, when the disease recurred. As Victoria told Dehner “I lived the words of your song”
Click on “Help Me To Stand” below and Mr. Dehner Franks will expose to you “The Force of the Source” of our individual and collective COMMITMENT in The Fight Against Cancer.