Why We Fight - Sandy Balbo

For 7 years, CLS has been raising money to support the American Cancer Society.

The TVM Memorial Golf Classic began as a way to honor former CLS owner Ted Vander Meer and now supports so many others battling the disease and CLS team members who have been affected by cancer.

It’s been a very long journey. And I think a lot times people don’t realize that a person doesn’t get cancer, a family gets cancer because it does affect the whole family, said Sandy Balbo, a cancer survivor and the wife of CLS Vice President of Customer Service, Tim Balbo.

I was diagnosed on Valentine’s day 2013. I had a very small stage of cancer but I had the most aggressive form of cancer that you can have, said Sandy.

Her children said initially they weren’t worried about her diagnosis but quickly realized what they were up against.

So we knew there was a long road ahead of us.” Bethany Boughton, Sandy and Tim’s daughter.

“The treatment, the treatment was rather brutal for her. These guys weren’t scared, I was. At one point we weren’t sure she was going to leave the hospital, said Tim Balbo.

One thing the entire Balbo family said made a difference in their battle was the help from the American Cancer Society.

The American Cancer Society did a lot for me when I had cancer. Between wigs and scarves and just being there for me. t made me realize what they actually do for people that can’t afford it. And it’s pretty amazing everything that they do, said Sandy.

The one thing you always hear about The American Cancer Society is all the great research and all that that they do, but like mom was saying there’s a lot of things I didn’t even realize that they did. Offering things like gas cards just so someone can actually get to their treatment or free rides, and it’s just amazing to find out all the different ways they help support the cancer patient and the families, said Brandon Balbo, Sandy and Tim’s son.

When I was with her and she’d go in for her treatments, they were always right there, never intruding, very subtle and they’d always come up and ask how’s it going. Sandy says the family gets cancer and the American Cancer Society was tuned into that, said Tim.

And the child to be the one that has to calm your mom down, it was a complete role reversal but the American Cancer Society completely stepped in and took that job from me. They knew what she needed to hear, they knew what she needed to do and they were able to put our minds in the places where they needed to be in order for us to take one step at a time, said Bethany.

It was a very daunting journey so I had to break everything off into bite size pieces, said Sandy. I went through chemo full a full year. I also went through the stage of chemo where I lost my hair, that was for about 8 weeks. I did radiation and I also did a chemo drug that I took for a full year.”

“I know how much cancer treatment costs and I don’t know how people that don’t have insurance can even afford treatment. So it’s just so good to be able to give back and have the experience of doing some good for somebody who truly needs it, said Sandy. To me it’s a real give back, to be able to help raise money for the TVM, to be donated and to know where that money is actually going. That it’s not just the research but it’s helping people that need the help.”

“And it’s amazing that a company the size of CLS to be able to that, It shows the tenacity of the employees, said Sandy/

Our goal is to support the American Cancer Society as much as we possibly can through the TVM while building a fun day that people look forward to, said Tim.