I would like to share with you how Team Angels was formed and how I believe God has a plan for every one of us. I believe there is no such thing as a coincidence in life. Everyone crosses our path for a reason. God does work in mysterious ways and we all have lessons to learn.
In 1999, I began my search to find myself. Somehow I had lost my identity. I dedicated myself to being a good wife. My children were grown, and needed less, and I felt worthless. Really, I had it all. A great husband, two beautiful and healthy children, and all the material things I needed, but still something was missing. There was a void in my life that did not seem to be filled. I was depressed from watching my brother Nick for many years battle breast cancer. I was very angry with God, and felt helpless. I often question God, why Nick? In December of 1999, as I searched for work close to my house, I found that all the doors were closed for me. My self-esteem fell even lower than ever. Now, I see why no one would hire me. God had plans for me.
Early in December, I cried my eyes out for no particular reason. I asked God to help me and lead me to where I was supposed to go. I promised I would listen, because i am very stubborn and I have a problem listening. My search took me back to Kroger in Rochester Hills. It was there that I met Christine Kaiser, a very talented young woman. My life was never the same; I never took anything for granted ever again. She and I became friends and talked a lot about our families. She shared with me that she was a breast cancer survivor. I shared with her that my brother was a breast cancer survivor. Christine thought that she had won her battle, but little did she know, her cancer would return, this time in her spinal fluid. After many treatments of radiation, Christine went blind. I spent countless hours by her side. The word life had a new meaning for me. I began to see what life was really all about. Finally, my life was filled with a purpose and the void in my life was filled.
In September of 2000, as I was walking out of the Macomb library, I saw brochures that read, “Making Strides Against Breast Cancer.” I picked one up and took it home to read. The brochure talked about a walk that was going to take place at Belle Isle to raise money for cancer. I decided to form a team to walk with me. I named my team “Angels” because I’ve always loved angels. Before I knew it, I had 30 of my family & friends helping me raise money. Hollywood cabinets sponsored us for our t-shirts. I had this other idea to inform Marnette Perry, president of Kroger in the Michigan division and asked her for help. This compassionate and dedicated woman without any hesitation not only had 200 t-shirts printed out for our team, but also involved many Kroger stores in Michigan.
On October 14, 2000, we all joined at Belle Isle for Making Strides Against Breast Cancer walk. Many Kroger associates walked in support of “Team Angels.” We raised 25,000.00 for the American Cancer Society within three weeks of our involvement. Christine lost her battle on June 21, 2001. She might be gone but she will not be forgotten. She will always be in my heart and prayers. I was blessed to have her in my life.
Team Angels consist of an amazing group of women who make magic on a daily basis by volunteering their time and talent toward our organization and cause.