Four months ago, a Tower Lakes dad and his two young children lost the most important woman in their world to breast cancer. Carlos Randolph’s wife, Margie, had just recently celebrated her 40th birthday when the disease took her life this past January 7th. Today, Carlos is making good on a promise he made to Margie. “In the end, her number one concern was always the kids and me. I told her that, when she did pass, I would make sure I would do everything I could for Wellness Place.”
Wellness Place is a non-profit organization that helps people with cancer and their loved ones deal with all types and all stages of the disease. Carlos says Wellness Place is where Margie turned when she needed support and strength during her three year battle. “Cancer is a very terrifying thing. I’m speaking for Margie but, when you get it, I think you feel like the loneliest person in the world…”
Carlos says Margie’s Wellness Place counselor was everything to her. “They walk the journey with you while you’re going through it and afterwards as well. You can’t put a price on that.”
Margie was diagnosed with cancer in 2009 after an emergency trip to Good Shepherd Hospital, where she was admitted for pain related to an injured artery. It was only about a month after their youngest child, Noah, was born. Noah will be three-years-old this June.
Carlos and Margie shared a long history together. They started dating 25 years ago as students at Lake Zurich High School. “Margie was my best friend and my confidante.” They married in 1996 at St. Anne’s church here in Barrington and moved back to the area to be close to family in 2008, about a year after their first child, Hannah was born. Hannah just celebrated her fifth birthday last week. “We’re just months out from Margie’s passing and, if you saw Hannah, you would never know. But she still has things she wants to talk about.”
Wellness Place continues to help Carlos answer the “what-ifs” he’s had from the beginning. “What if she dies? What about the kids? How are we going to get through this? What if I lose my job?” And Wellness is one place Margie knew would help Carlos and their kids cope after she was gone. “Knowing that Wellness Place was here for me and that the family would be OK was important to her. I promised her that I would continue to lean on them.”
Carlos says, though he mourns Margie’s passing, he’s at peace with it. He says that, today, his focus is on helping his children. “We’re at a point where we need to move forward.”
That’s why the team Carlos formed for the Wellness Place Community Cancer Walk/Run coming up at the South Barrington Arboretum on May 20th is in his daughter’s name. Team “Hannah’s Hope” will participate in Margie’s memory. The event is one of the main ways Wellness Place raises funds for the services they provide.
“Wellness Place doesn’t receive any state or federal funds or money from insurance companies. The services they offer are supported solely by contributions they receive from the community…They ask nothing of you. They don’t charge you for anything. They’re just there. Their doors are always open.” So Carlos says his goal is to raise as much money and awareness for Wellness Place as possible. 17 people have signed up to walk with “Hannah’s Hope” and the team has already raised $3,000. “I’m really encouraging people to try and participate because awareness is almost as important as the funds.”
The headquarters for Wellness Place is at 1619 W. Colonial Parkway in Palatine. The facility offers a library, counseling, classes, yoga, massage therapy, art therapy and many other resources for both children and adults. All of the dollars they raise help people with cancer and their families right here in our community and, in 2011, the organization served 1,300 people.
To learn more about Wellness Place, visit their website at WellnessPlace.org or find their Facebook page at Facebook.com/WellnessPlaceCancerSupport. To learn more about Margie Randolph and “Hannah’s Hope”, you can join or make a donation to the team by clicking HERE or you’ll find them on Facebook at Facebook.com/MIRandolph. The 2012 Wellness Place Community Cancer Walk/Run will take place on Sunday, May 20th at The Arboretum of South Barrington, 100 W. Higgins Road. To make a donation, click HERE and, if you have any question about the impact of this event, just take a look at this quick video created by photographer, Susan McConnell. The images speak for themselves.
Can’t see the video? CLICK HERE.