When Mariangeles came to St. Jude, she was stepping into the unknown. She was from Venezuela. She only knew a few words of English, and she’d never heard of Elvis or his hometown. She also had no other choice: doctors in her hometown had given her a week to live.
At St. Jude, the treatment protocol saved her life, but it wasn’t an easy road. She was in a coma for several days, and losing her hair later was devastating. But Mariangeles’ mother sat by her side throughout, and eventually St. Jude came to feel like a protective bubble.
After treatment, Mariangeles stayed in Memphis with her mother. She went to school there and forged a career. For a long time, she tried to leave her cancer story in the past. She didn’t share it with colleagues and new friends, not wanting others to feel sorry for her.
But now she works for ALSAC, the fundraising and awareness organization for St. Jude. She’s motivated to work hard for the cause because she knows what it’s like to walk through the doors of St. Jude without anything but hope.
Donate to St. Jude: www.stjude.org/donate
Transcript available HERE
Credits Host: Joel Alsup
Recorded by: Andres Garcia and Nathan Black
Music production: Kazimir Boyle
Producer: Geoffrey Redick
Editor: Grace Korzekwa Evans
Executive Producer: Louis Graham
This podcast is a production of ALSAC, the fundraising and awareness organization for St. Jude Children's Research Hospital.