Ann Seitz: One More Good Year
Ann Seitz is a petite woman with short blonde hair and soft, kind brown eyes - and the personality to match.
But don't let her appearance fool you; Ann is a fighter. And right now she's fighting for her life.
A few years ago, the 63-year-old Tiffin resident was working as an LPN at a long-term care facility. She was taking a patient in a wheelchair out to the deck to enjoy the sunshine when the wheelchair fell back onto her right hip.
When the pain did not subside with physical therapy, her physician ordered an MRI, which showed there was something suspicious in her ovaries and uterus.
"They told me I had cancer, and it had spread to the bone in my hip," Ann explains. "It was devastating."
She wanted to receive cancer treatment close to her daughter and family, who live in Sandusky, so her doctor recommended University Hospitals (UH) Seidman Cancer Center at Firelands Regional Medical Center.
Ann began her cancer treatment with Vinay Gudena, MD, MPH, medical oncologist and Grae Schuster, MD, radiation oncologist at UH Seidman Cancer Center at Firelands.
"They are just angels," Ann saus of the doctors and the staff of the cancer center. "I can't say enough about this place – everyone from the phlebotomists to housekeeping have just been fantastic."
And as if the news of having cancer wasn't overwhelming enough, Ann did not have adequate health care insurance coverage and was in dire need of help.
At her first appointment, she found out that donors like you give money to the Cancer Program Fund to help patients like her: patients who are underinsured and who have income but not enough resources to pay for the care they need.
Angie Grady, LPN, benefits authorization specialist with UH Seidman Cancer Center at Firelands, contacted the Foundation for Firelands to see what could be done for Ann. The Foundation for Firelands provides qualified patients with services and amenities that can help lessen the burden of a cancer diagnosis, including medication assistance, stress relief therapies and pain management, gas cards, dental work, nutritional support, and financial assistance, just to name a few.
The Foundation for Firelands was able to assist Ann with the cost of medication and nutritional services.
"From the moment I met Ann, I saw the despair and fear in her eyes yet could tell she was a strong fighter," Angie said. "Each one of my patients becomes family to me from the moment I meet them, and I am always honored to be a part of their life during such a difficult time."
And Ann is equally thankful for the assistance she received through the Foundation for Firelands.
"I just can't thank each of you enough," she says. "I don't know what I would do without the help of the Foundation for Firelands cancer program fund. It would be catastrophic for me."
She also said the love of her husband and her family (three children, seven grandchildren and two Golden Retrievers) help her keep up the fight. She also finds comfort in attending St. Joseph Catholic Church in Tiffin.
"I go to church and ask God to give me one more good year." she says as she looks at her lap, holding back tears. "Just one more good year."
Thank you for your generosity and commitment to helping our community through the difficulty of cancer. Your gifts provide hope and healing for cancer patients like Ann Seitz every day.