On Saturday, September 7, 2013 21 year-old Chandler Kaplan of Brookline participated in Swim Across America, Rhode Island. She completed a one mile open water swim in beautiful Narragansett Bay at Roger Wheeler Park. Chandler is a student at the University of Massachusetts, Amherst and swam for a special reason. Her mother was recently diagnosed with cancer. As a result of her commitment to her mom, and to fighting cancer, Chandler raised more than $14,000 (the top individual fundraiser at the Rhode Island event)!
As Chandler put it, “This past June, only one day after my little brother, Sam, graduated Brookline High School, I came home from work to have my world completely flipped upside down. I was informed that day that my mother, Sherifa, had been diagnosed with Stage 4 Lung Cancer. It hit our family like a ton of bricks. However, one thing was for sure, we were NOT going to fall apart in the face of tragedy. I have witnessed my mother's gleaming strength every day throughout my entire life and this would be no battle lost without a fight. In this time of tragedy, I pray, I hope and I fight.”
Proceeds from the Rhode Island event are going to Women & Infants Hospital of Rhode Island, in Providence, RI. The Program in Women’s Oncology there is the largest and most diverse oncology service for women in the northeast. Launched in 1989 to provide a broad spectrum of care for gynecological and breast cancers, it has evolved into a world-renowned, multi-disciplinary facility where clinicians uncover key answers to the questions of cancer, and focus on the needs of the patients and families.