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The one hundred honoree: Kathleen Granara-Skerry

Donor Story

The one hundred honoree: Kathleen Granara-Skerry

Mass General Giving

“At age 14, when her mother died from cancer, my wife Kathleen Granara became a surrogate mother to her six younger siblings. Three years later, she began a long career with the Commonwealth of Massachusetts. We married in 1981, and she became the loving stepmother of my three young sons. In 2004, at age 52, Kathy retired. The following year she was diagnosed with pancreatic cancer and told she had six months to live. A week later, Massachusetts General clinicians determined that her cancer was operable and Dr. Carlos Fernandez performed the surgery. Unfortunately, the cancer had spread and she was given a 10 percent chance of survival beyond five years. Under the care of Dr. Andrew Zhu, Kathy underwent chemotherapy, radiation and paracentesis. Despite the toll of her treatment and undaunted by her lack of fund-raising experience, Kathy raised $213,800 for pancreatic cancer research. She fought cancer with the same courage and generosity that have characterized her entire life. Kathy recently lost her battle with cancer.”

— David Skerry