I’d love to tell you a little about City of Hope. You see, it’s personal.
City of Hope is a real place—a comprehensive cancer center in the city of Duarte, Los Angeles County, California.
In two of my upcoming books, Isobel’s Mission of Courage and Faces of Courage, City of Hope plays an important part in the lives of the main characters Isobel and Olivia.
This nationally-recognized elite cancer institute has, more importantly, also played an important role in the life of my daughter, Melanie, a metastatic breast cancer “thriver” who has been my inspiration as I write about courage.
The sprawling campus houses the hospital, patient care offices, research facilities, and a graduate school (biological sciences).
At City of Hope Melanie found the best medical cancer care we could have asked for and the most caring, nurturing staff. Here she had a life-saving, fairly rare sternum resection. They removed part of her sternum in which the breast cancer had metastasized, and replaced it with a donor bone and titanium clamps. If it sounds scary—believe me, it was. Because of the titanium clamps, we often call her the bionic woman. And now you see why Melanie is my inspiration for writing about courage.
“There is no profit in curing the body if, in the process, we destroy the soul” quotes the COH website from Samuel H. Golter, the former executive director of The Los Angeles Sanatorium which later became City of Hope National Medical Center in 1949.
Photo credit: https://www.flickr.com/photos/cityofhope/14851362761/
COH’s Wishing Tree symbolizes its hope for soul-health. Staff, patients, and visitors are invited to hang their wishes on the tree standing prominently near the main entrance. Our family calls it the Prayer Tree, and we have adorned it with our prayers of healing and hope.
God has used the City of Hope mightily in the life of my daughter, and I salute it by using it as the place of healing for my characters as well.
Talk to you soon.