Verner family making the best of their new normal

ALL SMILES (left) Jillian, Edden, Mailin and Jordane Verner have been getting accustom to their new normal since Jillian was diagnosed with Colorectal cancer in Aug. 2019. A fundraising campaign started by Jordane called Jillian's Road where he will be cycling from their home in Ameliasburgh to Kingston General on Sept. 6, is raising money for The Canadian Cancer Society, Belleville General Hospital and the University Hospitals Kingston Foundation- all institutions where Jillian has received treatment. (Submitted photo)

 

DESIRÉE DECOSTE

STAFF WRITER

 

On August 26th, 2019 Ameliasburgh local Jillian Verner was diagnosed with Stage 3C Colorectal Cancer and for the past year and her husband Jordane Verner have been sharing their experience of their new normal over Instagram called Jillian’s Road.

That exposure with friends and followers have led to a fundraising campaign that supports the young County family..

“We want to create awareness that Cancer affects all ages,” Jordane stated. “That we have a great medical system but it all starts with you knowing and recognizing the signs something may not be right and to seek help.  Sharing our experience has been therapeutic during this past year and as we head into our new normal.”

The idea for Jillian’s Road came up shortly after Jillian was diagnosed. The young couple, both 36, saw this as her opportunity to share the good/bad/ugly with everyone who had questions or wanted to check in without feeling they were intruding. 

“For us, this is a form of therapy,” expressed Jordane. “It’s our vehicle to share what we’re working through, talk about our current hurdles, gain personal perspective of what we’re grateful for and balance our emotions.”

The Verners have two young children, Mailin who is turning six and Edden who is four.

“For our children,”Jordane said. “It will offer a glimpse back at the time when they would ask ‘why does Mommy’s bum hurt’. They can read their Mother’s journey, the love and support she received along the way and how she controlled what she could control.”

On May 21st, 2020 Jordane decided to go for a bike ride, he dusted off his bike put some air in the tires and set off.

And well, let’s just say Jodane hasn’t slowed down since. 

On September 6th, 2020 Jordane will be riding 104.75km from their home in Ameliasburgh with stops at Belleville General Hospital, Hotel Dieu and ending at Kingston General Hospital, the hospitals which Jillian received treatment at.

Jordane Verner.(Submitted photo)

“With this new found passion I saw an opportunity to help fight cancer by cycling Jillian’s Road, pun intended,” said Jordane “These institutions and the dedicated teams who work there have provided us with our new normal and for that we couldn’t be more grateful. This ride ‘Jillians_Road’ will raise money to help Canada’s brightest researchers make groundbreaking discoveries, provide cancer patients with much needed support and ensure that other life changing work continues to be possible. It’s very important to us that we can help pass care onto the next person, their family and their friends who may face cancer. We’re aware we may not be here today with the story we have if it wasn’t for someone else who did the same.”

The couple’s campaign had goals of raising $12,000 for the Canadian Cancer Society, (which they have fulfilled at at $12,145), and now they are continuing raising for Belleville General Hospital Foundation (BGHF) and the University Hospitals Kingston Foundation (UHKF), which is the Cancer Centre of Southeastern Ontario at KGH.

“The funds raised for BGHF and UHKF help local families in need,” Jordane expressed. “We appreciate the support in making a difference in our communities. It’s also important to us that if someone still wants to donate to the Canadian Cancer Society, we’re still accepting donations.”

So far into the second stage, nearly $1,000 have been raised to UHKF and those funds are being used for cancer research and patient support not covered by OHIP such as medications, accommodations, family support, travel expenses, etc.

Belleville General Hospital Foundation has a goal of $2,000 and $1,505 has been raised so far. The money goes to the Dr. Douglas A MacIntosh Fund which support individuals receiving treatment not covered by OHIP, FDA approved treatments not yet covered by OHIP, supplementary medications, family support, other expenses related treatment not covered by insurance, etc.

Jordane Verners bike route.

Individual targets have been set for each group to best support their individual causes.

To keep everyone safe donations are being accepted online for each group. 

If you can’t donate online please give Jordane a call at 613-922-2606 and he will work something out for you. 

“We’re humbled by our family, friends and community and those connected to us by some degree of separation who have all given to help others facing a cancer diagnosis,” added Jordane.

To follow Jillian’s Road on Instagram please visit www.instagram.com/jillians_road/?hl=en

To donate to the Canadian Cancer Society please visit support.cancer.ca/site/TR/IFE_ON_Event/IFE_ON_General_;jsessionid=00000000.app259b?px=13450300&pg=personal&fr_id=27159&NONCE_TOKEN=483AE8961A896006D3F6FB9A28FC99CA

To donate to UHKF please visit uhkf.akaraisin.com/ui/JilliansRoad