This story is part of the Pay It Forward series.
Some time ago, I came across Sahalie Bohren’s BohrenStrong Relay for Life page. It was impossible not be touched by her story, and I promised myself I would make a donation this year to help her cause. Thanks to a gift from my employer, McKenzie Books, I was able fulfill that promise.
Sahalie’s dad, Isaac, was part of our McKenzie Books team for almost three years. He left the company on the last day of 2011 to continue his education and pursue a career where he felt his amazing mathematical talents would help bring good to the world.
Isaac took great pride in his work; he was a very dedicated and loyal employee. He was also a true math genius and took great joy in sharing his gift. But what really made Isaac light up was the very sound of his daughter, Sahalie’s, name.
To honor Isaac’s memory, I am paying it forward to Sahalie so she can help make a difference in the fight against cancer and continue to tell her dad’s story. I know that Sahalie is the now one who lights up when she hears Isaac’s name, and I hope this donation gives her yet another chance to remember her father and smile.
This is Sahalie’s story:
My name is Sahalie Bohren. When I was just a few years old, I got up
on the stage at my local Relay For Life and said I was relaying for
EVERYONE. My family was involved with Relay because my uncle;
grandpa; and great grandparents had died of cancer. But then, right
after our Relay event in July of 2012, our reason to Relay changed.
Now I am relaying so that no other kids have to lose their dad to
cancer like I did.
On July 13th 2012, my daddy was diagnosed with esophageal cancer. I
was only 7 years old. We soon learned it was Stage 4 and had already
spread to his lymph nodes, bones, and to his brain. My daddy died two
months after being diagnosed, on September 16th 2012. He fought hard,
and was proud to be a survivor for those two short months.
I don’t think any other little kid should have to watch their daddy
die before they are ready because of cancer. Now my dad can’t come to
my school plays or Christmas or when I graduate and get married. And
I don’t think any dad should have to try so hard to beat cancer and be
so sick. My dad tried as hard as he could to not leave me, but one
day after I left for school he just stopped talking and then he
stopped waking up anymore. And then, that weekend his body couldn’t
keep breathing anymore and he left us. I hugged and kissed my dad
goodbye and told him that even though he was gone, he would always be
I miss my dad every day, but at Relay I can remember him and honor him
by fighting back against cancer. I work really hard all year to put
on fundraisers and collect as many donations as I can, because maybe
that last dollar I raised will be the one that helps pay for the
research that will find a cure. I set a goal every year for
fundraising, and I am a team captain for my own team at Relay.
I relay for my dad, Isaac Bohren, who was BohrenStrong.
Read all the stories at the blog tag: Pay It Forward Ideas