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February Fundraiser Launches Cohen Esophageal Cancer Initiative (CECI)
02.02.10, 04:50 PM EST

NEW YORK, Feb. 2 /PRNewswire/ - Cohen Esophageal Cancer Initiative, a non profit organization, will host its first charity fundraiser at Jonathan in New York City on Thursday, February 25. The event will launch a much needed organization whose sole purpose is to heighten the awareness of a relatively unknown and deadly disease and to administer compassionate patient counseling.

Founder Melissa A. Cohen, a licensed clinical social worker, has been struck personally by the death of her father and the diagnosis of her father-in-law of Esophageal Cancer. She began researching and found that this was one of the few cancers growing in numbers and it has an 88% death rate once diagnosed. The lack of awareness of the disease, its symptoms and the minimal accessible patient support made her and her husband, David I. Cohen, General Manager of the Warwick Hotel in New York, resolute to tell the world and to make a difference.

"Upon learning of the diagnosis of Esophageal Cancer in each of our families, we were devastated. We had to learn about cancer and its anxieties; as well as face how this diagnosis not only greatly affected our day-to-day lives; but, our relationships and plans for the future. Cancer changed us and how we live, forever. Yet, it is also what made us want to make a difference. Thus, we founded the Cohen Esophageal Cancer Initiative, Inc. (CECI)."

CECI's mission is to heighten the awareness of Esophageal Cancer and its symptoms, encourage screening, and to provide support and resources to others who have or will face a cancer diagnosis. The foundation is dedicated to helping patients and their families cope with the rigorous treatment schedule and the intense feelings that come with cancer. But, most importantly, CECI will strive to improve the lives of those personally affected by cancer, and to help in the eradication of Esophageal Cancer.

The event will be held at Jonathan, the private, cutting edge, just unveiled space owned by the well known, Jonathan, floral designer to the stars. It will feature David Ushery, NBC anchor as Master of Ceremonies, and a host of celebrities like John Starks of the NY Knicks, Tiki Barber of the NY Giants, Alan Colter of the David Letterman Show, and Max Weinberg, drummer for Bruce Springsteen to name a few.



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