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I was diagnosed with Multiple Myeloma, a form of bone cancer, in 1998. The following year, I had to leave my family for three months and receive a stem cell transplant at M. D. Anderson Cancer Hospital in Houston, Texas. After returning to Texarkana, I began the long road of healing, while trying to work to pay for medical costs. I experienced the other side of cancer that most people don't see and began asking myself questions like: “Will I live? What side effects from the treatments will I have to endure? How will this affect my family? Above all, how will I pay for it?” Luckily, I recuperated, dealt with—and to this day still deal with—the side effects, and was blessed with the insurance and funds to cover the high medical costs.
Cancer patients today are living longer. This means many receive extended periods of costly treatments that take a toll on their physical, mental and financial ability. There are many instances of individuals who, because they could not work, have depleted their savings, or have been denied coverage by their insurance company. Because of this, they have found it very difficult, or even impossible, to pay for their medical care.
One lady, a friend of mine in Texarkana, had divorced and recently changed insurance companies when she was diagnosed with a malignant melanoma. When she went to M. D. Anderson to receive treatments, her insurance denied coverage, claiming she had a pre-existing condition. She came back to Texarkana but could not afford treatments at one of the local clinics. Her friends and church family hosted garage sales and asked for donations to raise the money required for her treatments.
As a result of my friend's story and many other instances, my family and I started Angel Fund Foundation, Inc. in June 2006 to provide funds for cancer patients in the Texarkana area who cannot afford treatments or medical expenses. We have an approved Articles of Incorporation, board of directors, are registered as a non-profit organization in Arkansas, and have held meetings. We are presently educating the Texarkana area so that adequate funds can be collected to start making distributions in the future.
I want to give back to those who have not been as fortunate as I have. At some point in each of our lives, we will be affected by cancer. There is a need for everyone to fill by getting involved. Help us give cancer patients hope by joining Angel Fund Foundation.
—Beth Morgan, Founder of Angel Fund Foundation, Inc.