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The one hundred honoree: Jeannie Morrissey

Donor Story

The one hundred honoree: Jeannie Morrissey

Mass General Giving

In March 2009, Mass General patient Jeannie Morrissey (pictured center) and her friend Anne Marie Janeczek created Keep the Candle Burning, a web-based nonprofit service that promotes life-saving early detection of cancer.

True to its motto, “Give Yourself and Loved Ones the Gift of Another Birthday,” the service sends gift cards and electronic birthday greetings to the loved ones of subscribers. The messages also remind recipients to schedule an annual physical or mammogram.

The year before, while Jeannie and her “Birthday Group” circle were celebrating the birthday of a friend, they traded complaints of aches and pains and promised each other to book checkups. Jeannie’s mammogram revealed two types of cancer in her breasts and skin cancer on her back. After extensive surgeries at Mass General, Jeannie is now cancer-free.

Timely detection saved Jeannie’s life and through their creative service, Jeannie and her friends are widening their circle to encompass caring friends everywhere.