Why We Run
In May 2010, two weeks after her 10th birthday, Sally Naser was diagnosed with osteosarcoma, a bone cancer. Osteosarcoma afflicts only 600 children each year in the US, or less than 5% of all pediatric cancers. The standard osteosarcoma treatment protocol consists of a combination of chemotherapy and surgery. In spite of her doctor’s best efforts, Sally has suffered five recurrences of the disease, all to her lungs.
Sally suffered a setback in 2019 after more than a year of “no evidence of disease”, a new metastatic tumor was discovered during routine surveillance imaging. As with past tumors, the expansion of the grapefruit sized tumor was rapid. Based on recommendations from Sally’s care team, she underwent three weeks of proton beam radiation treatment and surgery. The surgery was heroic and included a full team of surgeons from Massachusetts General Hospital included a sarcoma specialist, thoracic surgeon, liver surgeon and plastic surgeon. They removed the tumor, but the trauma to Sally was considerable. The collateral damage required the removal of six ribs, part of her diaphragm and part of her liver. Further, the wound to her chest wall was so large it a second surgery several days later to close the wound using a free flap transplant to her left latissimus muscle.
As of the date of this update, May 24, 2021, Sally's last scan was clear and she is headed to her "happy place" to work for the summer.
The Sally Naser Charitable Foundation was formed in 2018 as a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization with a mission to support important research in the search for cures of pediatric cancers and to support the families of pediatric cancers patients. While what we able to achieve may be modest, our resolve is bold and resolute. We are grateful for your consideration in supporting the 10th running of “Four on the 4th Rally for Sally” road race to honor Sally and the many other young cancer patients whose lives have been forever changed or tragically ended by this terrible disease. Thank you.