The Valerie Fund Helps Families wtih Sick Children
Taped on the campus of NJIT, Sue and Ed Goldstein, founders of the Valerie Fund for Children with Cancer and Blood Disorders, share how losing their daughter, Valerie, to cancer made them determined to ease the burdens other families face with a sick child.
"We are pleased to welcome back Ed and Sue Goldstein, who are the founders of the Valerie Fund for cancer and blood disorders and they were, in fact, inducted into the 2016 New Jersey Hall of Fame recently. We want to congratulate you. Thank you very much. What was that like? Well, I think it was a little shocking. But well deserved. I think the Valerie Fund well deserved it. That's why we were there. To represent. That's right. The organization. The Valerie Fund. People know the name "the Valerie Fund", but they may not know exactly what it is and how it started. Talk to us. We started right after we lost our daughter Valerie. What it was, we were treated at Baby's Hospital in New York which was an all day affair getting there and back and forth, and as you well know, at that time, once you did your chemotherapy, there's a constant upchucking... Right. And you're driving on 80, 78, Garden State Parkway... That's right. ...and you're stopping constantly, and there were so many people there who couldn't see their children on a daily basis for a lot of reasons. Financial is the main one, and Sue and I just decided that it's not right. New Jersey has a lot of fine institutions and great doctors. Why isn't there a facility in New Jersey? There was nothing in New Jersey for pediatric oncology. You had to either go to the big cities, New York or Philadelphia, or you were treated by an adult oncologist, which is totally different than a pediatric oncologist and we had our first meeting with our group. We gathered a lot of friends together, people, and told them what we wanted to do, and we made a meeting at Overlook Hospital, and as I said, it was serendipitous because they were looking to do something in this field and they needed the impetus and we gave it to them. And that's how we got started. That's how you created the Valerie Fund? Pardon? That's how you created the Valerie Fund? Yes. In our living room. It began in our living room. It's grown tremendously and the impact it has, just so people can be clear and the website we put up now and other times throughout this conversation, it is dedicated to helping parents? It's a comprehensive healthcare for children with cancer and blood disorders. That's our title there and one of the things was we wanted was to make sure that the family stayed together. Right. When we went into New York to have Valerie's treatment, our other daughter, our older daughter... Was that Stacy? Stacy..."