Cissy was diagnosed 8 years ago at age 32, three years into her marriage and four months after welcoming her son. She had a large brain tumor (7 smaller) and stage 4 non-small cell lung cancer (NSCLC). She was STK-11, KRAS, ALK and EFGR negative. Her initial prognosis was that she had a 1% chance to live 5 years. Now 7.5 wonderful years later she is on hospice with no more treatments available. She has exhausted all chemotherapy, immunotherapy and radiation efforts including WBR. In February 2023, she was given less than 6 months to live.
After this final diagnosis, millions of people reached out to Cissy including an unlikely source, a friend of hers from 20 years ago. He heard about Cissy’s story and decided he wanted to do something. He gifted Cissy and her family a trip to Miami. This trip was an opportunity for her and her family to spend some special time together and make beautiful memories. Cissy recalls “it was the most perfect trip to be my final trip with my family.”
Cissy and her husband, Jason were so inspired by this friend they made it their mission to pay it forward and started Take The Trip Foundation. Take The Trip Foundation sends young families impacted by terminal illnesses on one special adventure together, leaving loved ones with cherished memories to carry with them, always. Despite Cissy’s recent devastating health diagnosis and being given 3-6 months left to live, she still has the desire to spread joy and hope to other families in similar circumstances.
“Take the Trip” comes from Cissy’s mantra since her diagnosis, “Just keep living, take the trip, eat the cake, buy the shoes, do all the things, you’re allowed, you’re allowed to live while you’re dying.” Cissy has taken this mantra to heart since her diagnosis, doing all the things she always wanted to. From a Christmas cruise in Balinese to surfing, white water rafting, and watching elephants in Thailand, Cissy is making the most out of every day.
“Don’t wait until you have an expiration date to really start living.”
We are extremely saddened to say that on August 14, 2023, Cissy lost her battle. Cissy impacted many people with her advocacy efforts and will be missed.