Coming to the American Cancer Society was a long journey. I had worked in the tourism industry from 1989 to the present in various capacities, but primarily Front Of House operations and Homeowner Assistance. My mom, Felisa Ragasa, found out she had breast cancer in 1981. By 1984, her cancer had spread through her bones and she passed away in July of that year. My sister Melissa and I decided seven years ago to form a team in honor of my mom, Team Fely’s Angels, at our Relay For Life. We also honor the family and friends of our team members who have passed on, or who are survivors. Specifically, my mother-in-law who passed away in February 1990 from a cancerous brain tumor and brother-in-law who passed away two months later in May 1990 from leukemia.
Four years ago I was approached by Millie Curtis of the Kaua’i American Cancer Society office to join her Relay For Life Committee as the Sponsorship and Underwriting Chair which was my first “volunteer” experience.
The past two years, I co-chaired the event and this year, stepped up as the Event Chair. As I became more and more involved and began to see the “bigger” picture of the purpose of the efforts of American Cancer Society, my passion for eliminating cancer grew stronger and I was very proud to say I was a Volunteer. When the opportunity came up to be a part of this organization as a staff partner, I thought what a better way to continue my efforts than to actually become a part of this organization to make a difference.
I feel blessed, honored, motivated and enthusiastic and look forward to my time working with the American Cancer Society.
Here are some of the events Patti is working on with Your American Cancer Society.