It is incredible how much change a single breast cell can cause in the world. Slowly passing through the various stages of growth and division over the forty some odd years that Eileen Stein Jacoby had lived cancer free, a genetic mutation had set off a cascade of uncontrolled mitotic divisions, which years later would show up on a mammogram as a pea sized mass of cells. While almost all cases of breast cancer negatively affect the families and friends of those individuals with the disease, Eileen’s ductal carcinoma was unique in that out of her struggle and eventual death, strangely a whole lot of good would be created in the world.
Following her three year struggle with breast cancer, Eileen Stein Jacoby passed away in April of 1999 at the young age of 45. Eileen was a wonderful daughter, sister, wife, mother, aunt, and a friend to many, and her legacy was carried on by those who loved and cared for her. A year after Eileen’s passing, with the help of her extended family and friends, Eileen’s sister, Cheryl Herman, threw all of her energy into creating the Eileen Stein Jacoby Fund for Breast Cancer Research at Fox Chase Cancer Center as a lasting tribute to her sister’s life. With tremendous support from her husband Scott, her children, her parents, her brother, and niece and nephew, and close friends, The Eileen Stein Jacoby Fund at Fox Chase Cancer Center was established.
Small but mighty, the Eileen Stein Jacoby Fund (ESJF) has achieved a tremendous amount during its short existence. The fund supports an amazing research team, and its fundraising efforts have had a tremendous impact on their work. The ESJF supports the laboratory of Molecular Biologist and Geneticist Andrew K. Godwin, PhD at Fox Chase Cancer Center in Philadelphia, PA. Dr. Godwin and his team of researchers study the hereditary and non-hereditary factors that influence one's risk of developing breast cancer and one's response to therapy. The ESJF also sponsored Dr. Xiaowei Chen when he first joined Dr. Godwin’s laboratory in 2002. His studies involve the identification of additional genetic factors that contribute to hereditary breast cancer. Instead of being used to buy a piece of expensive equipment that will one day become obsolete, our money is used to support a much more valuable and important part of cancer research—new researchers. 100% of the money that the ESJF raises goes towards supporting research. The ESJF has NO paid employees, we are ALL volunteers. Every single cent that the ESJF has collected over the past eight years from various fundraising events has gone towards supporting nothing but breast cancer research. The many fundraising activities organized by Cheryl and her army of committee members and volunteers include: an annual bowling benefit, golf outing, shopping sprees and special events at various businesses, holiday gift-wrapping at the Neshaminy Mall, sporting event trips, breast cancer apparel sales, trips to see Broadway shows in New York, breast cancer awareness events at colleges, high schools, middle schools, and local businesses, charity concerts, charity poker-tournaments, hypnotist and comedy dinner shows, and even square-dances.
Cheryl, along with her family, friends, and dedicated volunteers remain committed to supporting breast cancer research. We believe that the money we raise will make a difference in the fight against this dreaded disease.
Eileen Stein Jacoby