A very special ‘Letter to the Editor’ in honor of Mady
“The 5th annual Remembering Kyle Memorial Scholarship Concert was a huge success!
Because of the amazing support, from the 2017 Remembering Kyle Memorial Scholarship concert and this year from the fundraising proceeds from the 1st annual RKMS community rummage sale in June, both events enabled our family to award all four 2017 scholarship recipients with almost double the scholarship dollars they were guaranteed and expecting.
“Cancer treatments and care are not only emotionally draining and overwhelming, but they can also be financially draining and overwhelming for some families, too. Then add in college, which of course is so very costly. As much as I personally would love to give so much more money to help each of the families, we can’t. We’re just so very grateful to be able to offer what we do, all because of the support that we consistently receive, with each of our Remembering Kyle events. Our family’s intentions are not only to recognize and honor the cancer families within our community, and recognize all they’ve gone through, but to hopefully take even the slightest edge off of some of their expenses. These scholarships only touch the surface!
“So, to all Remembering Kyle Memorial Scholarship concert and rummage sale supporters, attendees, performers, in-kind and monetary donors, volunteers and MHS’s and St. John’s Church’s amazing, supportive people and venue location donations, endless THANKS to everyone… for whatever part you played in making this year’s scholarships possible!! Our family is so very grateful for all the passion, loyalty and unending help and talent from so many wonderful people, allowing our family and the community to not only remember and honor our family’s four-year old little Kyle, who died of Leukemia after just five months of treatments and a bone marrow transplant, but to honor and remember all cancer victims and families.
“For our last three years of RK concerts, we have honored little Mady Odegard. Mady was six years old when she was first diagnosed with Wilms’ Tumor. Because of Mady’s treatments, kidney removal, surgeries and the effects of all of her treatments, so typical and so difficult when cancer is in the picture, she was only able to make it to one of the three concerts. So, on the evening of the rehearsal, I told Mady that her Grandpa was the first performance and that she would be second, thinking because she’s so young she’d feel too nervous going first. By the end of that rehearsal, Mady came up to me and said “Beth Anne, can I go first before my Grandpa?” I responded with “You can do whatever you want because you’re the star!” Oh, did her enormous, sweet but smirky smile tell me how much she loved hearing that!! So, Mady, the star, went first at our 2016 concert! Mady was in full remission when she opened, and performed with her Grandpa and his guitar by her side. It would be a mass understatement to say that she easily melted the entire audience with her adorable piano songs. She quickly mastered wrapping the hearts of everyone around her tiny, little piano-playing fingers. Shortly after that evening, Mady’s cancer returned. Mady fought long and hard since that night, too. I’m so very tearful and sad to say that precious, little Mady lost her cancer battle last week. Mady and her family are so very deep in our family’s hearts, and will remain there. They are truly the epitome of why our family will continue our efforts to help families like Mady’s, and like ours, through each of our Remembering Kyle concerts and events.
“THANK YOU for all your support for our family’s most heartfelt cause! Please keep the Odegard and Jesperson families in your every prayer.”
Beth Anne Rekowski