Little Sister Michelle tells #WhyIamrunning. All for Big Brother Steve. Above is from Steve’s Wedding day with his siblings.
“My brother Steve was diagnosed with Leukemia at age 7. At the time, I was only 6 and I didn’t completely understand how serious the situation was. It wasn’t until I was older that I realized how lucky we are to still have him with us.
I remember his hair getting slightly thinner. I remember him missing school, feeling tired, LOOKING tired or the one time he gained weight from the medicine he was on. I remember the trips downtown for treatment at Children’s Memorial Hospital and running through the halls not really understanding what we were down there for. In my eyes, being the youngest of six siblings, this was just extra attention my brother was getting that wasn’t coming to me! To put it simply, I was jealous as ridiculous as that sounds.
It wasn’t until later in life when I realized just how amazing he was through the entire ordeal. I never remember him complaining…even when he had to have a spinal tap or even when we called him “Chubby Chubby Hedgehog” because of the weight he gained (VERY creative taunt at the time). He never gave any indication that he was sick or that he deserved sympathy and that’s how he’s always been.
He’s run the Jim Gibbons race for the better part of twenty years but is always shy about wearing his Survivor shirt on the day of. He doesn’t always go up to the stage unless we push him to do it and he never makes a big deal out of it. He just shows up and supports the cause without expecting any accolades.
He’s going to be 31 this year. His last leukemia related checkup was in High School and he’s been in remission for quite some time. He’s always been active…even after his diagnosis. He is an incredibly talented soccer player having played Club, High School, and at Augustana College. He still plays to this day on three soccer leagues with me throughout the city. He’s successful, both in his career and his personal life having gotten married in 2012 to his wife Jackie”.
I wanted to share all of this about Steve because he’s an amazing, kind, thoughtful, and caring person who never let leukemia slow him down.