Who is Emily?

Emmy was happy from the day she was born. Her smile would light up any room. That was her personality — always happy and smiling. In fact, many people said that they had never seen such a happy child. And affectionate David and Daniel will attest to the fact that Emmy gave the best hugs and kissies. She used to tuck them both in at night and run back and forth between their rooms giving good-night kisses. How she loved her two p.ssies on any given day she would choose one of them to tease, telling him that the other brother was her favorite. But they always knew that she adored them both. No little girl ever was blessed with two better big brothers. They loved and adored her, and she always knew that she was their “little p.ssiess”. And she always will be.

Emmy’s adorable sense of humor and teasing nature, combined with her intelligence, made her seem older that her years. She always wanted to be a “big girl”, even though she never gave up her pluggies. She wanted to ride a bus to nursery school, carry her own Disney backpack, and eat lunch at school just like her big brothers. We had many nicknames for her. “Preshie, coochimoomoo, and goosey” are only a few.

EmilyEmmy was a little girl through and through. She loved dresses, bows, party shoes, jewelry, purses, Barbie dolls, pretend make-up, and trying on her mommy’s high-heeled shoes. How her Mamie and Barbara loved buying her dresses!!

Belle, Aladdin, Jasmine, and Pongo were some of her favorite Disney “guys”. She especially loved her two trips to Disneyworld; her two favorite rides were Dumbo and “It’s A Small World”. She loved listening and singing along to music, especially her Disney tapes. She loved playing ‘puter with her daddy and going to gymnastics. Barney was her favorite TV character. Her favorite dogs were Maggie, Belle, and Cuddles. Banana bread, pink and yellow dots, grilled chesse, pizza, Lucky Charms rainbows, and cucumbers and dip were her favorite foods. Her favorite restaurants were Hey Pizza Man and Claim Company. Her favorite babysitter was Abby. Her favorite colors were pink and yellow. Hearts were her favorite shape.

Carly was her favorite little buddy — their play together was so much fun to watch, even the occasional fights over toys at Mamie and Grampa’s house or whenever Carly would touch any of Emmy’s toys. We remember their picnics of grilled cheese without crust. Brian was her best little boyfriend on Downing Street. Jonathan and Emmy could play dollhouse with dinosaurs together for hours.

But David and Daniel were her all-time favorites. She would rather be with them than anyone else. They always let their little sister play with them and their friends, even though sometimes she was a pest. She loved to watch her brothers and their friends (especially David Field) do puppet shows. Her brothers would even watch Barney with her sometimes, which was their supreme sacrifice, .ssie they couldn’t stand him. Emmy loved singing with them; she loved sitting between them on the couch watching a movie, while holding the bowl of popcorn on her lap. And how she loved movies!!! Free Willy, Beethoven, and all of the Disney ones were her favorites, expecially Aladdin and Beauty and the Beast (even though she was afraid of the Beast). The last movie she saw in a movie theater was The Lion King.

Emmy’s life was way too short. In her final weeks when Emmy was a prisoner in a body that was no longer functioning, I used to point to a picture on the wall and tell David and Daniel to remember their sister as the happy little girl they used to play with, who had such a love and zest for living. Emmy fought courageously until the very end when she could fight no more. Although we will never forget her time of suffering, we should not let those memories dominate our thoughts.

We try to find some comfort that wherever she is, she is happy and at peace. I used to tell Emmy during her final days that soon she would be running, laughing, playing, eating, and riding her yellow bike again.

During her short life, Emmy became a very important part of our lives, and she touched the lives of many. She will continue to be important in our lives forever, and we can do no more for Emmy than to keep her memory alive. We hope that no one will ever forget her smiles or her love. No one ever was more loving or more loved that Emily Ann Dorfman. She brought us great joy, love, and happiness.

Miles for Smiles

Miles for Smiles

Miles for Smiles 2001 was a great success. We had a great turnout of more than 600 people and raised in excess of $65,000. Thank you very much to all of the participants.

Miles for Smiles is an annual event held by the Emily Dorfman Foundation at the Chicago Botanic Garden in Glencoe, Illinois. It is a Bike/Walk-a-thon organized as a family participation event. The format is that if you decide to walk, you walk one and a half miles to a shelter where all the festivities are held, and when you’ve had enough food and entertainment, you walk one and a half miles back. If you decide to ride, it is a ten mile ride where you stop at the shelter just like if you walk.

At the shelter there is tons of food and entertainment. Each year we have been able to bring in the Jessie White Tumblers to perform. In addition, we have a disc jockey, a magician, a juggler/storyteller, and a face-painter to entertain crowds of all ages. There is always a raffle with lots of great prizes including a $2500 gift certificate to Computer Discount Warehouse, Floor seats to a Bulls game, a $500 gift certificate to Irv’s Men’s Clothing, a two night stay at Chicago Hilton and Towers, a one night stay at Grand Geneva Resort and Spa, plus many many more. We also have a silent auction that features mainly sports memorabilia, entertainment items and restaurant and hotel packages. There is tons of food at Miles for Smiles including bagels, hot dogs, candy, chips, water, cookies, and sports drinks, all generously donated by our sponsors. Just like everything else with the Foundation, 100% of the proceeds go to research and services to help seriously ill children.


Where The Donation Goes

Thanks in part to the generosity of KIDSS for Kids (Kindness Is Doing Something Special For Kids), we have established a special endowed fund at Chicago’s Children’s Memorial Hospital. The Emily Dorfman Smiles and Hope Fund is created to provide financial support so that the social workers and other “Child Life” specialists at the Hospital can appropriately acknowledge the milestone when a child with a brain tumor or other pediatric cancer has completed a course of treatment. The fund is also used to support special celebrations for in-patients undergoing treatment for cancer at the Hospital.

We are very proud of the grants we have made and the programs we are currently funding. We would like to take this opportunity to let everyone know where the Foundation’s money goes, and what we are doing to help others. Below we have described just a few of the many projects funded by the Foundation. To find out more about the many programs that we support, please write to us requesting more information. 

The Brain Tumor Learning Center-
An Emily Dorfman Foundation Program
Emily Dorfman Foundation
We have committed $125,000 over five years to create and develop a model Learning Center at The Brain Tumor Center at Duke University Medical Center, Durham, NC. Duke is truly a national center for research, and for the treatment of adult and pediatric brain tumors. This innovative Learning Center program benefits children with brain tumors, siblings, and children of adults with brain tumors. The Learning Center is a warm, friendly environment for exploration, with a focus on emotional support as well as learning.

“Basic” Brain Tumor Research Grants – Across the USA
The Foundation has made several two-year grants for cutting edge laboratory research relating to pediatric brain tumors. Some of the research has helped to advance significantly the state of scientific knowledge; all the grants have helped encourage and aid the work of dedicated scientists. Some of these two-year grants are listed below.

In 1996, a $50,000 post-doctoral fellowship to James M. Olson, M.D., Ph.D., a pediatric oncologist at the University of Washington Children’s Hospital and the Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center in Seattle.

In 1997, a $50,000 post-doctoral fellowship to Howard S. Weiner, M.D., Assistant Professor of Pediatric Neurosurgery at New York University Medical Center in New York City.

In 1998, a $25,000 post-doctoral fellowship to Martha L. Simmons, M.D., Ph.D., a neuropathology fellow at the University of California in San Francisco.

In 2000, a $60,000 post-doctoral fellowship to Julie M. Fleitz, M.D., a neuro-oncology research fellow at The Children’s Hospital of the University of Colorado Health Sciences Center in Denver.

In 2001, a $97,250 grant to Mark M. Souweidane, M.D., Associate Professor of Surgery and Director of Pediatric Neurosurgery at The Weill Medical College of Cornell University and The Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center in New York City.

“Translational” Brain Tumor Research

In 1999 the Foundation made a one year $50,000 “translational research” grant relating to pediatric brain tumors. The recipient was John Yong Ho Kim M.D., Ph.D., a postdoctoral fellow at the Dana Farber Cancer Institute and Children’s Hospital In Boston. Dr. Kim is also an Instructor in Hemotology-Oncology at Harvard School of Medicine. Translational brain tumor research is pre-clinical research intended to evaluate the therapeutic potential of recent discoveries in the basic mechanisms of either brain tumor pathogenesis or experimental therapeutics. Dr. Kim’s research evaluated the use of Neurotrophin-3 for the treatment of a very common type of pediatric brain tumor called medulloblastoma.


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