Published in the July 9th issue of The Edmonton Sun. News
Gaga tix put to use
Lance Chung is a self-declared “little monster.” That is — he’s a huge Lady Gaga fan.
The 21-year-old is hoping other fans gaga over Gaga — like him — will take part in a contest he’s launched for cancer research.
Six months ago, Chung’s mother Helena, 49, was diagnosed with stage three multiple myeloma — the most severe stage of an incurable cancer of plasma blood cells affecting the immune system.
The University of Alberta business student dropped out of the last semester of his third year in the program to be with his mother, driving her from their home in Banff to cancer treatments and check-ups in Calgary, twice a week for six months.
Now Chung has created “Monsters against Myeloma,” a campaign where he will give away his pair of floor-seat tickets to Lady Gaga’s Aug. 27 show in Edmonton to the person who raises the most money for myeloma cancer research.
“Little monsters, it’s the name of Lady Gaga’s fan base… so it would be kind of cool if a little army of fans that rally for her could also rally for this competition,” he said from Banff.
Chung hopes to not only raise money but also bring myeloma cancer awareness to as many people as he can.
“This is something that has been devastating for our family… I thought this would be a good way to get the word out about it (myeloma) because we had no idea what it was before and the more people who are aware, the better.”
After months of treatments, Chung’s mother, who he affectionately refers to as “mama bear,” is now near a stage of remission.
At the end of the month, she will undergo a stem cell transplant treatment that doctors say should help improve her quality of life.
“It’s not considered a cure, but it can help her get better,” Chung said.
Ninety-three cents out of each dollar raised for Monsters against Myeloma will go towards the Multiple Myeloma Research Foundation.
And though myeloma is considered incurable, it is treatable, and Chung is hopeful new research and better treatments in the future, will help his mother live a long and healthy life.
“With all the awareness and research, hopefully they can find something — a cure,” he said.
There are approximately 6,000 Canadians living with myeloma.
To get involved with the campaign, go to the Monsters Against Myeloma page on Facebook, or e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org.