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Stephanie Armstrong-Helton

SJMPH Hosts Picnic to Honor Cancer Survivors
Start Date

May 10, 2013


Port Huron, MI…The long road toward survival starts in childhood – a time when individuals build remarkable endurance, capacity for patience, and drive to overcome any obstacles that stand in their way. To celebrate this level of remarkable commitment, St. Joseph Mercy Port Huron and its Mercy Regional Cancer Center (MRCC) are hosting a special Cancer Survivor Picnic.

Individuals who have faced a cancer diagnosis, or are loving family members, friends and/or caregivers of someone who has battled cancer, are invited to have that endurance, patience and love acknowledged and honored at this special event. The Cancer Survivor Picnic will be held from 4 to 6 p.m., Wednesday, June 19, near the East Entrance of St. Joseph Mercy Hospital, located at 2601 Electric Avenue, in Port Huron. The Survivor Picnic will feature FREE picnic fare and refreshments, the continual development of the Survivor Garden, and inspiring stories of survival from the heart.

“Although everyone who attends is invited to share their survivorship story, we have identified an individual who will to speak about her journey,” comments Kelly Grevemeyer, RN, Oncology Nurse Navigator at St. Joseph Mercy Hospital. Marilyn Vander Esch, a long-time Spiritual Care volunteer at St. Joseph Mercy fought her personal battle with endometrial cancer just last summer.

A nursing professor emeritus from St. Clair County Community College, Vander Esch is a registered nurse, who also holds Bachelor and Master of Arts degrees from Oakland University, as well as a PhD from Walden University. Throughout her extensive professional life, Marilyn has also served on the St. Joseph Mercy Board of Trustees, including holding the title of Board Chair; she currently serves on the Strategic Planning and Clinical Ethics committees. Marilyn, a dedicated motivational speaker will share her insight on her personal journey of which so many individuals and family members have faced.

In addition to individual stories of inspiration which will take place beginning at approximately 4:30 p.m., the event will feature the ever evolving Survivor Garden. Established last year, the garden includes hanging baskets, potted plants and garden art to highlight the enduring spirit of survivorship. Individuals are invited to contribute to the garden in his/her own name, or in memory or honor of someone else.

For ease in access to the hospital’s east entrance and picnic, event participants are asked to park in the lot adjacent to Electric Avenue. To register for the Cancer Survivor Picnic, please call 1-888-637-2963.

To learn more about the Mercy Regional Cancer Center and St. Joseph Mercy Port Huron, go to: You’re also invited to search St. Joseph Mercy Port Huron on facebook and follow us on twitter.

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St. Joseph Mercy Port Huron | 2601 Electric Avenue, Port Huron, Michigan 48060 | 810-985-1500