Tag: Champion of Hope

A Tribute and Goodbye to a Dear Friend


Jeanne (R) with Bill Kunkel, board member, and Dianne May at the 2011 Tribute Dinner

by Dianne May, President & CEO

Cancer Services lost a stalwart friend this week with the passing of Jeanne Schouweiler. She was the CSNI Champion of Hope award winner last fall at our annual Tribute Dinner and a long-time supporter of Cancer Services. Here is an excerpt of that evening:

“It is such an honor to recognize Jeanne and her long-standing commitment to the organization this evening.

Like many volunteers, Jeanne became aware of Cancer Services, then the Allen County Cancer Society, when cancer personally touched her life. She began volunteering in the early 1970’s by delivering bandages and bed pads made by volunteers to cancer patients in the community. Her daughter Lisa remembers as a child accompanying her mother on these trips to help others.

Jeanne is a woman of strong faith who deeply values friendships, possesses a sincere desire to serve others and is a blessed with a remarkable energy level. She is the kind of friend we all need and hope for in our lives and Jeanne’s gift of friendship crosses multiple generations.

When I first met Jeanne she was clear and passionate when telling me how important she believed it was for our community to understand that Cancer Services is an entirely local organization. For many years she has made it a priority to spread the word about our mission to help local people here in our community.

In all the things she has done and continues to do, she never seeks personal recognition. She volunteers and serves because she values people.

At Cancer Services we have staff members who serve as personal advocates for families. Jeanne is an advocate for the mission of providing encouragement and practical help. Another volunteer at the organization has coined the phrase, “having a heart for cancer.” Jeanne truly has a heart for cancer and coupled with her remarkable energy and desire to serve others has become a champion of hope for many. It is fitting that as she celebrates a milestone birthday this fall we celebrate her gifts of compassion and service to others.

Accepting Nominations for Champion of Hope Award

Last year, Cancer Services of Northeast Indiana introduced the William A. Kunkel III Champion of Hope Award, an honor designed to recognize an individual who embodies the mission of Cancer Services through his or her lifelong commitment to enhancing the quality of life of those affected by cancer in Northeast Indiana.

“Our clients tell us all of the time that having caring companionship and practical help means so much on a difficult cancer journey,” says Jill Nichols, co-chair of the Champions of Hope Selection committee. “It is important that we honor those who have made that assistance possible.”

Cancer Services’ board of directors bestowed the first award on its namesake, William A. Kunkel III, who has served in many volunteer roles, including board member since 1959.

“Bill’s service to Cancer Services has been exemplary,” says Tom Horton, co-chair of the Champions of Hope Selection committee. “The award was an honor long overdue.”

Cancer Services is accepting nominations for this year’s award. The recipient should demonstrate an unparalleled devotion to the organization as a volunteer, advocate, friend and companion, leading by example and exhibiting unwavering compassion.

Please visit our website to fill out the nomination form: cancer-services.org. Be sure to include information regarding how the nominee demonstrates leadership, compassion, and devotion to Cancer Services, including examples which address quality of life issues for people with cancer.

Nominations may be submitted by June 1, 2011 to Dianne May, Cancer Services of Northeast Indiana, 6316 Mutual Drive, Fort Wayne, IN 46825, or via email to dmay@cancer-services.org.