The Coshocton County Beacon April 17, 2019 - Page 25

Shaw shares story at cancer survivor and caregiver dinner By Mark Fortune COSHOCTON - Cancer survivors, caregivers and loved ones gathered at the Lake Park Pavilion on a beautiful April 11 spring evening to celebrate, encourage and share with friends and family. Sheri Shaw was the speaker and following a delicious meal served by the folks of Keene United Methodist Church, she was introduced by Amber Goddard, Relay for Life event lead. Shaw told the large crowd of survivors and caregivers, “Th is year is a little diff erent for me. I’ve been chosen as the Grand Marshall at this year’s Coshocton County Relay for Life. I can’t begin to express what an honor this is for me. My journey with cancer began in 2003 when my mother was diagnosed with infl ammatory breast cancer which is a triple negative breast cancer. It’s very aggressive. “My childhood friend came to me two and a half weeks before Relay was going to start and said, ‘Let’s do Relay for your mom this year’. I said, ‘Never done it, I don’t think we can do this.’ She said, ‘Yeh, we can.’ At fi rst I said there’s no way, it’s not going to happen - guess what, we did it and what a success we had. Our fi rst year, in two and a half weeks, our team raised $9,326.14. All through friends, family, my mom’s friends and family. “Th en 2004 rolls around and it’s Relay time again. Un- fortunately my mom did not make it that year - she died three weeks before Relay. We still went, we still did Relay, because I know that is what she would have wanted us to do. We pushed through and raised close to $7,000 again. It was tough being there and trying to be strong without my mom being there. But we did it. Th at brings me to where I am today. “My journey with cancer began in August of 2013. It struck a little closer to home when it struck me. I’ll never forget the day the doctor walked into the room and told my husband and I, ‘It’s cancer.’ It’s something you never forget - you try to deal with it and you move on. “First you think, I can’t do this - there’s just no way - and there were times I would yell at God and yell why Mark Fortune | Beacon Cancer survivor Sheri Shaw was the featured speaker at the annual Cancer Survivor & Caregiver dinner held at Lake Park Pavilion in Coshocton on Thursday evening, April 11. Shaw will be the Grand Marshall at this year’s Coshocton County Relay for Life, to be held Friday and Saturday, May 10 and 11 at the fairgrounds. me? I have three sons and all I wanted to do was to see those three get married and have a family and give me some grandkids. So I asked God, please, just let me have at least one son get married. Well, I’ve seen all three of them get married and I’ve been blessed with a beautiful granddaughter and another one on the way. “I went through the chemo treatments and all the eff ects of it - losing my hair, losing the eyelashes. Th e sick- ness, the aches and pains and so on. I’ve been through countless surgeries; my tenth surgery is scheduled for May 15. My cancer has shown up in the colon, it’s shown up in the stomach lining and it’s shown up in the breast. Over the past fi ve and a half year’s I have had the best support team that anyone can ask for. “My entire family, each and every one of them, has been there in so many diff erent ways. My rock has been my husband Shawn. He has been there every step of the way, from taking me to doctor’s appointments in Colum- bus, sitting with me through chemo for eight hours each time and making sure I got home to bed afterwards. “He’s even made sure to tell me that I look beautiful even when I had no hair. I sit up at night wondering when it will ever end. But every day that my feet hit the fl oor I thank God for another day. I can’t tell you that this jour- ney has been easy for me or for my family by any means. But I can tell you that without the love, the support and caring of everyone who did and is still standing beside of me, I couldn’t have done it without them. “My message to each and every one of you is, it’s never easy when cancer enters your life personally. But life after the diagnosis is never the same. You must always remember, you are braver than you think, stronger than you seem and loved more than you know. But there’s one thing that I remember being told by a special friend of mine, Jim Eckelberry, never give up. Th ank you.” Chestnut Ridge entertained the survivors, caregivers, families and friends before dinner and following Sheri Shaw’s speaking. Tracy Barnhouse, ACS Staff Partner said, “I love seeing everyone come out tonight. I think we had the fullest room tonight that we’ve had in the four or fi ve years. We love seeing everyone come out and support each other. I know people look forward to this. Sheri is a strong wom- an and we appreciate her speaking tonight and every- thing she and her family do for Relay. I can’t say enough about the Keene United Methodist Church and the meal - they do this every year as a donation and we appreciate them so much. “Our committee up here works so hard - I just love them all - they will start planning for next year’s Relay as soon as this year is over. We appreciate Chestnut Ridge coming every year and playing for us.” McMorrow is proud to be from Coshocton Staff | Beacon COSHOCTON – Elizabeth “Liz” McMorrow always knew she wanted to settle down in Coshocton. “I like the small town and love being close to my family,” she said. McMorrow was born and raised in Coshocton, outside of Ros- coe, in a home built by her father. “I grew up taking hikes and loving the outdoors,” she said “My parents Dave and Jacque Wagner own a small business in town and taught my sister Erin and I much about work ethic and com- mitment.” While growing up in Coshocton, McMorrow participated in var- ious sports, her church youth group and was active in 4-H, taking goat and hog projects and participating in the public speaking program. She also was the junior fair queen her senior year of high school and the 2003 Coshocton Canal Festival Queen. After high school, McMorrow went to Ohio University – Zanes- Contributed | Beacon ville, where she earned her bachelor’s in early childhood educa- tion with a reading endorsement. She also has a master’s from Elizabeth “Liz” McMorrow was born and raised in Coshocton County and now teach- Muskingum University in the area of education with a fourth and fi fth grade endorsement. es at Coshocton Elementary School. Her “I have wanted to become a teacher since third grade when I family includes husband Zach and children had one of the greatest teachers, Mrs. Valda Dawson at Conesville Asher, Olivia and Lillian. APRIL 17, 2019 Elementary,” McMorrow said. “Mrs. Dawson was very caring and compassionate. She had a way of setting high expectations but giving school a fun learning environment.” McMorrow now works for Coshocton City Schools. She spent the last eight years teaching kindergarten and is currently in her fi rst year as a title one reading teacher. McMorrow also is the volunteer children’s director at the Coshocton Christian Tabernacle where she organizes the children’s activities including Sunday morning programs and the midweek program called Kidstuf. “Children are my passion,” she said. “Th eir zest for life and in- nocence make working with them so fun. At church, I love being able to instill the most important values children will need in life, knowing God loves them and how to live a life with Him.” Liz is married to Zach McMorrow, who also was born and raised in Coshocton. Th ey have three children, Lillian, Olivia and Asher and live outside of Roscoe in a home built by Liz’s dad and Zach. “Coshocton is my hometown and there are many things I love about this town,” Liz said. “Th e one thing I think that sticks out most is the sense of community. Th e way this town can rally around and support someone or a cause is astounding. Th is com- munity is extremely giving and compassionate. We are proud to be part of such a community.” Editor’s note: Th e Beacon is working with the Coshocton County Cham- ber of Commerce to highlight young professionals in the community. THE BEACON 25