In March of 2014, John Champion lost a 10-month battle with cancer. He was 46. John was a wonderful father and husband, a trusted colleague to many at the Johns Hopkins University Applied Physics Lab, and a friend to so many more. Everyone that was fortunate enough to cross paths with John quickly recognized his intelligence, his wit, and his contagious smile. John’s death was a tremendous loss to everyone who knew and loved him. No one, however, can understand a child’s pain of losing a parent at such a young age.
To ensure that John’s life was not forgotten and that his spirit would live on, Doug Silverstein and Tim Finkelston, along with John’s family, formed the Champions Against Cancer Foundation. As the Foundation began to take shape and additional board members were added, there was much discussion regarding the mission and vision of the foundation. John’s battle with cancer was long and difficult, and as difficult as that battle is for the patient, it is equally difficult for the family. In many situations, the lives of the patient’s spouse and children are put on hold as all resources and energies are focused on beating cancer. Therefore, as we hashed out the purpose of the Foundation, we quickly gravitated toward the family members, in particular the children, of those afflicted with cancer. The lives of the children are anything but normal; we therefore decided that – the mission of Champions Against Cancer should be is to help these children maintain a sense of normalcy through the chaos that accompanies a parent or family member’s fight against cancer.
John was the inspiration behind Champions Against Cancer, and that inspiration just continues to grow as we witness the mission being embraced by so many members of our community. We were blessed to have John in our lives, and through Champions Against Cancer we will have the ability to touch countless others in his memory.
A message from the Inaugural President
Almost all of us in Howard County have been affected by cancer in our loved ones, friends, and colleagues. Over the past few years, we in Howard County have witnessed many of our family members and friends become afflicted with cancer. We have provided emotional support, logistical support (for example, car rides) and our time to help our neighbors and friends. We all try to comfort the loved ones, and provide a support system that will endure. We all hear the concerns of the parents: How will my children continue their growth and development into adulthood while I or my spouse fights cancer? It is in that spirit that we formed Champions Against Cancer, a non-profit organization whose aim is to provide tangible and everlasting support for children in families affected by cancer.
Our organization is comprised of family members, neighbors, and friends in Howard County. We want this to be an organization that provides real support, including financial resources for the children for various purposes, for example, school tuition, activities, and trips to see family. We want Champions Against Cancer to be an organization that we can be proud of in Howard County. We hope that you will join us in our kickoff fundraiser to support children and Champions Against Cancer.
Board of Directors
President, Board of Directors
Vice-President, Board of Directors
Doug Silverstein, M.D.
Treasurer, Board of Directors
Financial Adviser, Board of Directors
Janet Briel, R.N, M.B.A
Director, Community Support, Board of Directors