To the Editor:
In response to the Letter written by Nanette Traband of Edwardsville and published by the Madison-St. Clair Record on Sept. 16, I wanted to share with the community why Gori, Julian and Associates so diligently supports mesothelioma research this month and every month.
Our firm was formed in 2008 and since that time, we have held various fundraisers to help support the Mesothelioma Applied Research Foundation, such as the recent Oktoberfest event we co-hosted with Global Brew. Our support is given in the form of volunteer time and a cash donation. We also make a donation as a memorial when our clients pass away from this terrible, preventable disease.
You do not know until you sit with someone who suffers from mesothelioma, at the hands of someone else's negligence, how much pain and suffering is involved. We have met so many wonderful people over the years. They are the reason we do what we do every day so we can help them and their families pay bills, receive quality medical care they need and deserve, and pay for funeral expenses. We have numerous clients in Edwardsvile and Madison County who are afflicted with this disease. To think that mesothelioma doesn't affect us locally, as Ms. Traband suggests, is wrong.
Ms. Traband also points out in her letter titled, "Mesothelioma research, not a priority for local fund-raising," September is Pediatric Cancer Awareness month, a cause we support with donations and volunteer time. But, September is also a month that includes a day of dedication to raising awareness for mesothelioma, a different type of cancer and a cause important to many people we have met over the years.
On Sept. 26, the nationally designated day of awareness, we will pledge our donation that includes the proceeds raised at the Oktoberfest event supported by many of our friends and partners in business. We did not choose September to host a fundraiser because we choose to support one organization over another, nor do we wish to distract from local efforts to raise awareness about any cause. We support more than 150 different organizations with sponsorships, donations, and volunteer time and find them all equally deserving.
In fact, the staff and partners at Gori, Julian and Associates also lend our time by serving on numerous local charitable events.
We have seen the pain that mesothelioma causes, the families that are torn apart because of this disease, and the corporations who continue to profit while putting others at risk. Most people support charities because they have a personal connection or have seen first-hand how a disease or a social issue impacts those they love or a community they love. We are no different. Mesothelioma may not be commonly known, but that's part of why we are working so diligently to raise awareness. You do not know how this disease or any other will impact you and your family until it does.
So, yes, we will support mesothelioma research and awareness this month and every month, and we challenge everyone in the community to do more for the charity they choose.