Marblehead mom raises cash to combat uncommon cancers

Jacqui Lewis is a Marblehead mom who does everything by herself and raises two adopted children while running a travel company. “I’ve lived my best life,” she told top women owned businesses like six years in a row, (then) one day I just had this pain in my shoulder and that started my journey with cancer -19 shutdown. “That actual Friday, which was Friday the 13th, I was told I had a cancer called cholangiocarcinoma,” said Lewis. “Most people would probably know it as bile duct cancer, if they even knew it. I was shocked, but what really shocked me was when they told me I had rare cancer and the prognosis was poor. ”Rather than slowing down, Lewis aimed for the drive that kept her long and successful in business to be on a new mission to instill hope for people with rare cancers. “These statistics made me say, ‘You have to stop and do something. Something has to change.’” Lewis started the RARE initiative to raise at least $ 1,000,000 for the Henri and Belinda Termeer Center for Targeted to collect therapies at the Mass General Cancer Center. Dr. Lipika Goyal explained that advances in fighting one rare cancer can lead to answers for others, but then you can actually fertilize each other and borrow that knowledge into other rare cancers, ”Goyal said. Lewis is now asking people who want to support the fight against rare cancers to wear a wig for a day and raise funds for WigOut for a Cure. “All we asked is to donate $ 22 and support someone who is ready to take on a challenge,” she said. “That $ 22 represents all of us, the 22% who rarely have cancer.” Lewis said she was almost halfway to her $ 1,000,000 goal, and she recently passed the $ 435,000 mark . Information on the WigOut challenge and the RARE initiative can be found here.

Jacqui Lewis is a Marblehead mom who does everything by herself and raises two adopted children while running a travel company.

“I’ve lived my best life,” she said. “(I’m) an entrepreneur and had shouldered the best women-run businesses for six years in a row, and that started my journey with cancer.”

Lewis says she was diagnosed in March 2020, the week of the COVID-19 shutdown.

“That actual Friday, Friday the 13th, I was told I had a cancer called cholangiocarcinoma,” said Lewis. “Most people would probably know it as bile duct cancer, if they even knew. I was shocked, but what really shocked me was when they told me I had rare cancer and the prognosis was poor.”

Rather than slowing down, Lewis aimed for the drive that long drove her to be successful in business on a new mission and to instill hope for people with rare cancers.

“What we’re getting now is 3% of the funding, and we represent 22% of the people with cancer,” she said. “These statistics motivated me to say: ‘You have to stop and do something has to change.'”

Lewis started the RARE initiative to raise at least $ 1,000,000 for the Henri and Belinda Termeer Center for Targeted Therapies at the Mass General Cancer Center.

Dr. Lipika Goyal explained that advances in fighting a rare cancer can lead to answers for others too.

“In rare cancers, sometimes you see a mutation with a cancer, you find a drug that works for that mutation in that cancer, but then you can actually fertilize each other and borrow that knowledge into other rare cancers,” Goyal said.

Lewis is now asking people who want to support the fight against rare cancers to wear a wig for a day and raise funds.

She calls the challenge WigOut for a Cure.

“All we asked is to donate $ 22 and support someone who is ready to take on a challenge,” she said. “That $ 22 represents all of us, the 22% who have rare cancer.”

Lewis said she was almost halfway to her $ 1,000,000 goal and recently passed the $ 435,000 mark.

Find information about the WigOut challenge and the RARE initiative here.