In memory and celebration of Morgan Pritchett
Ginny and Dee Pritchett joined TCSN as a chapter in 2009 in honor and celebration of their daughter, Morgan. Morgan was their oldest child, and they called her their “little ladybug”. She loved all the things that most 5-year-old girls enjoy. Arts, crafts, baking, and she loved planning parties. She would pack goodie bags over and over again. It was her mission to fill their home’s walls with her drawings. She was also the textbook picture of a princess who loved dressing up.
Ginny and Dee Pritchett were shaken when Morgan, who had just started kindergarten in 2007, began experiencing symptoms that led to a trip to the doctor and an MRI. That day they heard the term, “DIPG” for the first time, followed by "no cure". In 2009, when Morgan was 6 years old, she passed away after a challenging 20-month battle.
Morgan had a strong will and a determination that were admirable to all who knew her. She lost her ability to walk by herself early on in her diagnosis. Still, Morgan insisted on walking with the assistance of her parents almost everywhere she went, foregoing the use of wheelchairs or walkers. Morgan's parents have inherited her determination and strength, continuing to raise awareness and fund research. "We are also motivated by the need to honor Morgan by attempting to live after the example that she set." Ginny wrote, "To learn from the lessons of perseverance and determination that she taught us."
The Pritchetts were one of the first chapters of The Cure Starts Now. They connected with the Desserich family through a Yahoo group set up for families whose children had been diagnosed with DIPG. They were drawn to The Cure Starts Now because of the collaboration of others focusing on the same thing in order to make a larger impact. Since 2009, they have put on many events and fundraisers, with their benchmark event being the golf tournament, On Course Fore a Cure, which they have hosted for over 10 years. During one golf tournament, they were swarmed by ladybugs, which we are sure were sent by Morgan! As a chapter, they have raised an astounding $1.5 million for the cure.
Ginny and Dee seek to raise awareness, funding, and support for other families experiencing childhood brain cancer. Their chapter also holds a seat as a member of the Strategic Advisory Council. We are honored to work alongside the Pritchett family as our Virginia Chapter.
The Cure Starts Now (501c3 Federal Non-Profit) is one of the only cancer foundations dedicated to a “homerun” cure for all cancers, starting first with one of the most deadly and difficult cancers: pediatric brain cancer. Many experts believe that the lessons we learn from fighting pediatric cancer may in fact provide us the critical first step in winning the battle against all forms of cancer, both pediatric and adult.