PLANTATION, Fla., March 18, 2021 /PRNewswire/ -- Debbie's Dream Foundation: Curing Stomach Cancer (DDF) has granted two more stomach cancer patients' wishes as part of its newly launched Dream Makers Miracle Fund. With the sponsorship support of the global biotechnology company, BeiGene, DDF sent 18-year-old Joey Siwe and his family to Disney World to honor his first stomach cancer anniversary. In addition, stomach cancer survivor Debbie Ross was granted the wish of celebrating her birthday weekend at an all-inclusive resort. Through initiative, DDF aims to spread joy by providing patients and their families with bucket-list inspired experiences.
For Joey Siwe, a stomach cancer diagnosis was the furthest thing from his imagination as a high school junior. His older brother (Billy) had unexpectedly passed away at age 20 from stage IV stomach cancer a few years prior. At 17-years-old, Joey was unexpectedly diagnosed with stomach cancer in 2019. He underwent a total gastrectomy in early 2020, removing his entire stomach to avoid the risk of cancer spreading. Joey is an avid fan of Star Wars, so his main wish for his first cancer anniversary was to go to Disney World in Orlando, Florida, with his family for the full "Star Wars: Galaxy's Edge" experience. DDF had the honor of making his wish come true.
"The trip was an amazing experience for my entire family, and especially for Joey," said Julie Feece, Joey's mother. "We're so grateful to Debbie's Dream Foundation for not only being there for us in our times of need but also investing in Joey's dream. Having already lost a child to this disease is completely devastating. It makes me happy to know that initiatives like this exist to help give patients and families hope."
Debbie Ross and her husband Terry were sent to Tulalip Casino & Resort in Tulalip, Washington, as part of her wish fulfilled. The couple enjoyed a relaxing one-night stay and dinner for two for Debbie's 59th birthday weekend. Debbie admits that the experience was just what she needed after being diagnosed with stomach cancer in June 2020, undergoing stomach cancer treatments, and a recent brain tumor removal.
"Priceless moments with loved ones are extremely important to those impacted by stomach cancer," said Andrea Eidelman, Chief Executive Officer of DDF. "Through our Dream Makers Miracle fund, we offer these experiences to patients and families to help inspire hope. With the support of our industry partners BeiGene, we were able to do just that."
For more information and updates about the Dream Makers Miracle Fund, visit www.DebbiesDream.org/miraclefund/.
About Debbie's Dream Foundation: Curing Stomach Cancer
DDF is a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization dedicated to raising awareness about gastric cancer, advancing funding for research, and providing education and support internationally to patients, families, and caregivers. DDF seeks as its ultimate goal to make the cure for stomach cancer a reality. DDF was founded in 2009 by Debbie Zelman after she was diagnosed with stage IV incurable gastric cancer in 2008 and given only weeks to live. Debbie is considered a pioneer by many for bringing awareness to stomach cancer patients' plight and the lack of federal funding for stomach cancer research. She did all of this while receiving hundreds of rounds of chemo, in addition to daily oral treatments. Debbie passed away on December 23, 2017, almost a decade later, at 50. As a result of her leadership, DDF now has a Scientific and Medical Advisory Board of world-renowned doctors and chapters throughout the United States, Canada, and Germany. DDF strives to continue Debbie's mission and make her dream a reality. To learn more about DDF, please visit us at www.DebbiesDream.org.