MMRF Race for Research: San Francisco 5K Walk/Run
The MMRF is proud to honor Jack Aiello as a 2013 recipient of the Spirit of Hope Award, given at every MMRF Race for Research 5K event to an individual who inspires hope with their perseverance in overcoming personal obstacles such as a cancer diagnosis.
Posted: March, 2013
The MMRF is delighted to recognize Jack Aiello as the 2013 MMRF Race for Research: San Francisco 5K Walk/Run Spirit of Hope honoree. Jack is an amazing and inspiring man. A “team of one,” he is supported by many generous family members and friends who have helped him raise over $247,000 in the 10 years he has participated in San Francisco.
Jack worked in sales and marketing for various Silicon Valley high-tech companies in California. In 1995, he was VP of Marketing for a video editing company when he was diagnosed with multiple myeloma. He was given a very poor prognosis for long-term survival. At the time, he had been married for more than twenty years and his children were 16, 14, and 10 years old.
The diagnosis threw Jack, his family and friends quite a curve. After lots of chemotherapy, three transplants, two clinical trials and several rounds of radiation, Jack is thrilled to have his myeloma in remission. Significant side effects have prohibited him from continuing to work, so instead Jack has become an active volunteer and advocate within the myeloma community. His efforts have benefitted countless myeloma patients and their families.
In the 18 years Jack has lived with multiple myeloma, he has seen firsthand the benefits of research funded by the MMRF research, as the average survival rate has doubled from three years – when Jack was first diagnosed – to seven years today. He knows that the dollars raised at events like the Race for Research program have made it possible for the MMRF to fund and oversee research efforts that have resulted in the FDA approval of six new myeloma drugs since he began treatment. Jack continues to work so hard for the MMRF because there is still no cure for myeloma.
“I have often said that I always wanted to watch my son Jason conduct an orchestra and walk my daughters Erin and Krista down the wedding aisle. And of course, I couldn’t imagine anything sweeter than bouncing a grandchild on my lap”, Jack shares on his Race for Research fundraising page.
In the last 6 years, Jack has been fortunate to see all of these milestones come to fruition. Jack has been able to see his family grow: three and a half year old granddaughter Ella was joined by Riley Jack three months ago… and the third grandchild is on the way in September! “How lucky am I?” Jack asks.
We salute Jack and encourage you to “Do as Jack does” – Jack shares these words of wisdom for MMRF fundraisers: “Set a significant goal – and then do not stop until you get there! Remember, the number one reason people do not donate is they were not asked!”