At any given point in someone’s life, there is something that drives them; something they have a passion for; something that makes their life worth living.
Honoring a Friend’s Legacy
My friend Karen Creque was a very special wife, mother, “Mimi,” sister, aunt, and friend. In 1998, her children were grown and each had started their own families. She finally had time for herself. Of course, she spent her free days on the three G’s: Grandchildren, gardening and golf.
Later that year, Karen began to experience abdominal bloating and urinary issues. She scheduled appointments to see her doctors, including her gynecologist. The doctors ordered numerous tests except the CA-125 and pelvic ultrasound. After several months of waiting, Karen was diagnosed with Stage 3 ovarian cancer.
With the diagnosis of ovarian cancer, Karen was not going to stop living because of the disease. In fact, she was determined to fight. It was that determination that allowed her family and friends the pleasure of having her in our lives for seven years after her initial diagnosis. During this time, she shared her experiences with others battling cancer, hoping to calm their fears and spreading her hope.
In August 2005, Karen participated with us in the first annual Ovarian Cancer Walk to benefit the Ovarian Cancer Connection. She bravely walked alongside 22 of her most supportive family members and friends.
On Saturday, September 19, 2015, many of Karen’s supporters will walk again, along with more than 1,000 participants who are walking in honor or memory of someone special in their lives — all in the hope that a cure can be found. Everyone will return to their homes, armed with vital information about ovarian cancer and how to spread the word about this disease.
Golfing With and For Karen
In the midst of her battle with ovarian cancer and countless chemotherapy treatments, Karen would often schedule her treatments and doctor appointments so she would feel well enough to golf with her loved ones. She had a passion for the sport and enjoyed spending time out on the links quite often.
Just ten days before Karen was admitted to in-patient care at hospice, and 21 days before she passed away, she shared her last round of golf with her daughter, Amy. It was a day Amy would treasure forever. Karen taught Amy to be a friend and to have a caring heart for everyone. She would share people’s happiness and be there for them during their times of sadness. Karen was always supportive and showed everyone that she cared by doing the little things, even when she was facing her own adversity.
To honor the memory of Karen, and the courageous battle she fought, the Ovarian Cancer Connection is sponsoring the 10th Annual Karen Creque Memorial on Sunday, June 28, 2015 at the Legacy Golf Course in Ottawa Lake, Mich. The outing holds a special place in the hearts of the Creque family and friends.
Whether golfers know Karen Creque or are golfing in memory of a special woman in their lives, the event brings everyone together for a common cause: Ovarian cancer. So the next time you hit the greens, or drive by a beautiful golf course, think TEAL and take a swing at ovarian cancer.
Gini Steinke is the Founder & President of the Ovarian Cancer Connection, who’s mission is to educate the northwest Ohio and southeast Michigan community on the early warning signs of ovarian cancer, support research of this devastating disease, and provide financial assistance to survivors in need.