Elizabeth Fenn Brings Symbol of Hope to Bladder Cancer Patients

By Christine Mack, Development Officer

Sometimes the best way to heal is to create. That’s why Betty Fenn set out to create a special quilt when she was diagnosed with bladder cancer in 2014. Elizabeth “Betty” Fenn is 92, but that doesn’t stop her from paying tribute to her cancer journey in a remarkable way.

In 2014, Betty was diagnosed with bladder cancer. While she endured radiation therapy to rid her body of the cancer, she often admired a quilt hanging on the wall. She was an avid quilter and was inspired by the beautiful item she saw every day.

According to her daughter, Nancy Buderer, Betty had a very intricate quilt in mind, when she decided to create her own symbol of hope for bladder cancer.

“She wanted to complete the quilt pattern titled ‘Kimimila’, which means butterfly, a pattern she had picked out before her bladder cancer diagnosis,” Nancy says. “Butterflies are a symbol of endurance, change, hope and life. After only a few treatments, my mother decided to donate the quilt to the cancer center upon completion, so that it could be a source of inspiration and hope for other patients.”

Despite the side effects of her bladder cancer treatment, Betty diligently worked on the quilt and enlisted the help of her friends and fellow quilters in the Huron Presbyterian Church Quilters group, Ann Pullano and Cathi Dix.

Betty is proud that the quilt has now been completed and hangs in the radiation therapy area for patients to enjoy as they undergo treatment.

“Just as my mother had envisioned, this amazing quilt is admired by patients and staff daily,” says Nancy. “It is truly a legacy of the gracious, faithful, and hopeful person my mother is.”

Learn more about the cancer services at Firelands Regional Medical Center today.