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Larry Davis Memorial Grant

Hegmans, Joost - Larry Davis Memorial GrantMacrophage recruitment/polarization as a prognostic and therapeutic target

Hegmans, Joost – Larry Davis Memorial Grant
Macrophage recruitment/polarization as a prognostic and therapeutic target

This year’s Mesothelioma Symposium, held in Las Vegas, Nevada, brought together some of the country’s finest people. Victims of the terrible disease, both the patients and the caregivers, doctors, lawyers, staffers and friends.

I admit the lead-up to this conference brought up a lot of the pain that occurred during my father’s life and even more that came in his death. The

"Celebration of Life"

“Celebration of Life”

anxiety I felt course through me was overwhelming, but I was able to use it to fuel a fire I’d let go out during the last few months. That was the fight for justice over the people my dad left in charge to make sure his final wishes were carried out. Now I can’t say what will or won’t happen, because I don’t know. But I finally had the energy to remind a few people that I love my father with all my heart and that no matter what they try to take, I have won’t renounce that he was my dad.

This past Friday’s symposium dinner  was an amazing reminder that his energy not only flows through me but also through a foundation he worked ever so hard for. I introduced myself around to those who may or may not have remembered me saying, ‘I’m Courtney, Larry Davis’ daughter’. It was so good to see people around me who so loved and enjoyed my dad. The people who he had turned to for information initially and friendship later. Unfortunately I forgot in my moment of accepting  his award the Larry Davis Memorial Grant to sign off with what became is go to signature “Believe in a Cure, Believe in Yourself‘. I was able to get in a good deal of Thank You’s to Mary Hesdorffer for always being an amazing point person, to Erica Ruble who also lost her father to this horrible disease who has been fighting to make every day better, raise money and for being such a great friend, first to my dad, and then to me. I needed to have thanked the whole Foundation staff for what they do every day and their help in making my father’s award happen, to all the folks who donated to the annual fund, and to the people who donated in my dad’s name when he died. Fortunately I did remember, actually there was no way I would forget (!), to thank Janelle who fights the affects of Meso every day of her young life and yet looks like a beacon of happiness despite the pain, discomfort and the unknowing. Janelle raised a significant amount of money in my dad’s honor during a motorcycle ride this past fall. She is a beacon and her attitude is outstanding. I’m sure I don’t even know all of the other people who had ideas or funds that I may have overlooked,  but I do believe that one of the best assets of the Meso Foundation is it’s ability to keep bringing people into their community and working for a cure.


… and thank you to Linda who traveled to the ends of the earth to be there for my father’s funeral.

Of course, I should also thank my aunt, uncle and boyfriend for being so supportive, even when I’m so stressed I can barely hold the tears in. It was a difficult weekend for all of us, but I believe the community made it easier.

My love to the Meso Foundation, my family and  to the loving memory of my dad, may he rest in piece.

A few other groups I’ve failed to name outright are the law firms that have helped by sponsoring my father’s 3 South Florida Miles for Meso events and helped him to pay for his medical costs by virtue of a settlement; Simmons Law, Sokolove Law, Weitz & Luxemburg, Early Ludwick Sweeney & Straus and Levy Phillips and Konigsberg.

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