Cancer affects families across the country – because cancer knows no boundaries. When individuals advocate to support lifesaving research, every donation or effort, both big and small, collectively can make a world of difference in saving lives. Meet Steve Groh, a father who knows far too well the devastation of pediatric cancer. His daughter, Ava, was diagnosed with Wilms Tumor at just two years old. Once she entered remission, he was determined to pay it forward. Steve created Ava’s Waste Removal, a locally owned and family-operated residential and commercial trash pick up with a portion of proceeds donated to find a cure for pediatric cancer.
Ava’s Waste Removal to find a cure
Ava’s Waste Removal was founded by me, Steve Groh, and my fiancee Mary McGuire in October of 2015. We service the Monroe County Indiana area in providing unmatched customer service in the waste removal industry. Mary and I both grew up in this area so our roots run deep in Hoosier country. When we were formulating our plans to start a business one thing was for certain, we wanted to pay it forward and to help do our part to eradicate childhood cancer. A percentage of all profits received by Ava’s Waste Removal will be donated to the Pediatric Cancer Research Foundation. It’s been that way since day one and we will always remain dedicated to the cause.
Besides the birth of our daughter Ava, there are two very poignant dates in our lives so far. The first being May 5th, 2009. This was the day that our beautiful baby girl was diagnosed with Wilms Tumor, a rare kidney cancer that primarily affects children. Ava Rose was only two years old at the time.
Getting the news about a loved one having cancer is something you can never prepare for. Hearing it about your own child is indescribably devastating.
Throughout Ava’s journey, she was such a vigilant soldier. We were fortunate enough to have the amazing doctors and nurses at Riley Children’s Hospital caring for our daughter. Her medical team quickly formulated a plan to aggressively treat Ava’s cancer, our family prayed, and we all vowed to not let cancer win this battle. The hospital became a home away from home for our family.
January 10th, 2010 is the second date that will always resonate with us. This is the day that Ava officially entered remission. The treatments worked and our sweet girl won her battle with cancer! We weren’t out of the woods quite yet, but we knew she was going to make it.
Here we are seven years later and you would never guess that Ava had been through all that she has. Surgeries, ports, chemo… she is the strongest person I have ever met. Our advice for families navigating this difficult voyage is to remain positive and never underestimate the strength and resiliency of your children. They are stronger than you think and much wiser than you could imagine. Cry when you need to, find a shoulder to lean on, hug your babies tight and remember that they are born with an innate ability to fight this terrible disease.
We encourage those of you who have been affected by childhood cancer to take a stand. No contribution is too small to make a difference. Every donation increases the odds that a child wins their battle with cancer.
“Be brave, you will not see the light at the end of the tunnel if you don’t walk through the darkness”
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You too can help make a difference. Check out the ways you can Contribute to a Cure and get involved with PCRF to help us continue to fund lifesaving research across the country.