Family set to fight cancer together at 5K event

2013-04-12T22:00:00Z 2013-04-13T03:06:09Z Family set to fight cancer together at 5K eventJohn Burbridge, (219) 933-3371

MERRILLVILLE | The Fisch family is praying for a lot of things. For one, no rain on April 27.

"That would be nice," Lisa Fisch said, "and hopefully it will be a little warmer than what it has been."

Whatever the forecast, Lisa is anxious to enjoy the outdoors again. For the better part of the past year, she's been surrounded by the four walls of her Merrillville home after being diagnosed with pancreatic cancer.

"It's been very rough ... rough on me and my family," Lisa said of her ongoing battle, which includes energy-draining chemotherapy treatments. "They've managed to find a block for the pain, but I'm always tired ... I don't have much of an appetite."

Lisa's daughter, Megan, was hit hard by the news. The Merrillville and Purdue University graduate had recently moved home after earning her degree in environmental health.

"I started searching the web and emailing people for any information I could get on (pancreatic cancer)," Megan said. "That's when I came across this."

It was Pacreatic Cancer Action Network's PurpleStride Chicago 5K run/walk on April 27 in Lincoln Park.

"I said to Mom, 'Why don't we do this? And we can do it together'," Megan said.

Neither Lisa no Megan had participated in a 5K before, thus they will opt for the walk pace. Lisa hopes she will be well enough to complete the course.

"But they have a short-cut for those who may need to take it," Lisa said. "There will be other cancer patients participating."

So far the team Megan has formed, "Love for Lisa" is 17 members strong.

"A lot of them are friends of the family," Lisa said, "and some I have no idea who they are, but I'm happy they signed up."

Among the team members Lisa does know is her husband, Mike. Unlike his wife and daughter, Mike has experience in long-distance running, having served in the Marines.

"But my knees are a little too shot for this," Mike said. "My role is primarily to drive them there and drive them back."

As of April 10, Love for Lisa has raised more than $1,600 in PurpleStride pledges. Overall, more than $230,000 has been raised in pursuit of a goal of $525,000.

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