Don Wilhelm Memorial Benefit
September 20, 2010
My husband Don Wilhelm, 39, peacefully succumbed to his 10 year relationship with Hodgkin’s Lymphoma cancer on September 13, 2010. He was a strong patient advocate helping thousands of people with their cancer experiences. He believed, taught and lived life with a positive mental attitude. He did this through this website as well as the book he wrote.
Don and I had many talks about what he would like me to post on his website once he was gone. He asked me to write a blog for him and post this: “I’ve filled my original goal here on earth. It was to spend the remainder of my life helping cancer patients. It seems to be where I found the greatest joy and the most sense of worth. I’m moving up into the next role. I’ll leave my faithful followers to slip in and fill the gaps. Love to you all and positive energy.”
At 29 years of age, without a family of his own, Don didn’t see the need for life insurance. Then he was diagnosed with cancer and it was too late. Don was laid off in February 2009. He had wanted to go back to work but he was not able to due to his health. One of Don’s biggest concerns was how I would manage after he was gone. Don lost more than his life, he lost the ability to provide for his family and cover medical costs. Without life insurance, having been laid off for almost 18 months and mounting medical bills he knew I would have my hands full. He suggested that I host a memorial celebration of his life with a benefit to help relieve the burden of his medical costs.
I asked Don what he wanted his obituary to say and what he wanted people to know. He wanted people to know how much he loved me. He stated: “Don is survived by his incredible wife Amy, with whom he lived a full life of happiness and true love.” Don and I shared true love from early on. I met Don over 5 years ago while he was in remission. After we had been dating for a while, Don turned to me and asked if I was scared of being with someone who has had cancer. My response was simply, “I love you. It wouldn’t hurt any less if I lost you now or later.” It is over 5 years later and even though I have a huge hole in my heart from his physical absence, he has left me with gifts that I will have forever. He has taught me how to live life with a positive mental attitude that I am able to pass on to others. I am very proud of Don and the work he has done helping people with their cancer experiences. The inspiration and support he gave to me as well as others leaves quite a legacy.
I am celebrating Don's life with a Memorial Benefit. Don lived life with an attitude of gratitude and would be very grateful for your help.
Don Wilhelm Benefit Memorial
Sunday, September 26, 2010
The Club House @ Shore Club
200 Shore Club Drive
St. Clair Shores, MI
Don's favorite foods:
Pizza, Hot Dogs, Nachos & Beverages
LOTS of PRIZES!
Slideshow, Memories and Music
If you would like to make a monetary contribution,
please send to:
The Donald A. Wilhelm Estate
P.O. Box 806334
St. Clair Shores, MI 48080