The story of Lindsey Kimball is truly an amazing one. At an extremely young age, Lindsey was diagnosed with cancer—twice. She was first diagnosed at age seven, then again three years later. In order to survive, she had to undergo an open-heart surgery, an extremely dangerous procedure, and a bone marrow transplant.
Pushing the Limits
Most would crumble under the stress of not only having a disease such as leukemia, but also the intensive treatment Lindsey endured. But not Lindsey. She battled what she calls, that “horrid disease” for years.
Now, at age 16, she’s celebrating her fifth anniversary of being cancer-free. “Now, I can just be normal Lindsey. I [am] still known for having cancer, but I [am] a normal teenager now and that’s something I have wanted for so long,” she tells us.
Lindsey says she dealt with all of the turmoil by looking to her family for support: “When I [felt] down, I would usually sit and talk with my mom and she would always be there to make me feel better.” With her amazing team backing her, Lindsey won her battle with cancer in 2005.
Lindsey’s incredible story doesn’t end here. In 2002, while she was in the midst of her treatments, she found the love and support of a new family who called themselves “Team Lindsey.”
Team Lindsey is a team of Pan-Massachusetts cyclists who ride in the annual bike-a-thon in Lindsey’s honor. The money raised by the PMC (Pan-Mass Challenge) goes entirely to cancer care and research at the facility where Lindsey was treated, the Dana-Farber Cancer Institute and The Jimmy Fund, a clinic at Dana-Farber specifically for children.
In the past, Lindsey has not been healthy enough to participate in the bike-a-thon herself. This year, however, she was finally able to ride with her team. During our interview, she found out for the first time that Team Lindsey raised over 23,000 dollars for PMC and Dana-Farber: “Wow. I am so beyond proud of my team and myself,” she said in total shock. “I know we all worked very hard to raise this money and I’m so amazed that we raised this much.”
When she grows up, Lindsey wants to be an oncologist, a doctor that works specifically with cancer patients, so she can help others who are going through the same thing she did. She didn’t let two rounds of cancer keep her down. She stood up and fought, determined to make a difference.
What it Takes
Lindsey encourages other girls going through difficult times to do the same. “All it takes is one person to make a difference. I was presented with the PMC and look where it got me: 23,000 dollars raised, and that goes 100 percent to Dana-Farber and The Jimmy Fund,” she says.
“To the girls going through tough challenges or who have overcome challenges, always keep a smile on your face and remember anything is possible if you set your mind to it. Don't be afraid to show that you have what it takes to make that difference.”
Want to make a difference like Lindsey? See how you, your family and your friends can get involved in the PMC Kids Ride program at www.pmc.org.