Close to five hundred guests came to show support and help raise funds for the young daughter of Barrington chiropractor Dr. Ryan Felde at a Fundraiser called “Pennies 4 Payton” Saturday. Shortly after her third birthday this past October, Dr. Felde’s daughter Payton Felde was diagnosed with a rare form of liver cancer.
Dr. Felde and his wife Lauren spent about a month with Payton at Lurie Children’s Hospital in Chicago leading up to Thanksgiving.
She was treated for complications before she was strong enough to start chemotherapy treatments, which are underway now.
Over 100 children also took part in Saturday’s “Pennies 4 Payton” fundraiser at John Barleycorn in Schaumburg. Organizers raffled off a number of exciting prizes donated by high profile athletes including Chicago Bear Charles Tillman, Major League Baseball players Ben Zobrist and Neal Cotts, retired pro-basketball player Charles Oakley and professional football player Jarrett Payton, son of the late Walter Payton.
A DJ played fun songs, getting the kids out on the dance floor and Dr. Felde says a highlight was when Santa and his elves dropped by to visit with Payton, her 2-year-old brother Jordan and their friends.
“Without this event Payton would not have gotten to see Santa, dance the Cupid Shuffle, rebuild her self confidence and have a good time. Lifting her spirits has been hard. The Pennies 4 Payton event was definitely able to do this!”
Many of the children have been hard at work filling their own piggy banks with pennies for Payton. All proceeds will help the Felde Family offset the cost of an estimated $150,000 in medical expenses for Payton that insurance will not cover.
“Cancer is expensive and, at the same time, my wife isn’t working and I’m working a very limited schedule. We spent 28 of the first 30 days of her diagnosis inside the hospital. So money raised from this event will go towards saving my daughter’s life.”
“Payton has a rare liver tumor and, while we trust our doctors, there is no guarantee that her little body will be able to handle everything that is being thrown at it. So we are making sure that we are doing everything possible to get her healthy.”
Despite the time away from work so he can be present during Payton’s treatments, Dr. Felde says facing the unknown has been the biggest challenge.
“The hardest part about her cancer to me is that there is no right answer. What works for her may not work for the next child and unfortunately the opposite is true as well. What works for others, may not work for Payton.”
And that’s why Dr. Felde says the prayers and words of support they have received since Payton’s diagnosis have been particularly meaningful.
“At times you have this uneasiness because you can’t solve her problem. But at times you have this unbelievable calm when you know that you’re surrounded by unbelievable people and it kind of lifts you up.”
To follow the family’s updates about Payton’s progress and offer words of support, visit her webpage at CaringBridge.org.
If you would like to help the family by making a contribution, you can do so online at Pennies4Payton.com.
On January 4th, Dr. Felde will be putting on a special event at 10am where he will be educating patients on how they have transformed their home to improve Payton’s health since her diagnosis and how they can implement these same changes to keep their families healthy. Dr. Felde says they are helping people set up their “Don’t Get it” plan for cancer prevention and he says the session will be both fun and educational.
“If there are 100 kids out there we can help get a little healthier, that’s what we’ve rededicated our practice to.”
To sign up for this event, email RyanFelde@Gmail.com