With a heavy heart I write to the many friends and admirers of Ellen Stovall and NCCS about her passing on January 5, suddenly from cardiac complications due to her cancer treatments. To many of us—likely thousands—she was a trustworthy friend, a mentor, a collaborator, a visionary. Ellen was all of this and more, and always with a generous heart, a keen mind, a quick wit, and unswerving ethics. How fortunate we were to know her; how grateful we are for her thinking and her work for all cancer survivors.
Now is the time to honor Ellen. Each in our own way. At NCCS, we will carry on, inspired by Ellen’s lengthy leadership and incredible legacy.
Chairman of the Board
For information on the arrangements for Ellen’s services, see this post: “Remembering Ellen Stovall: Arrangements Announcement.”
If you wish make a gift in honor of Ellen’s legacy, please click here to donate to the Ellen Stovall Memorial Fund.
Below is a guestbook where you can share your thoughts and remembrances of our dear friend and tireless advocate Ellen Stovall.
Ellen showed us that one person can make a difference, and for that, she has changed the world.
She will be missed dearly but her vision and legacy will impact millions.
Many blessings to all of you,
Ty and Sherry Walker
I do not know how to begin to adequately honor you. You touched so many in ways that were meaningful and lasting. You were kind, yet firm. You were supportive, yet directive. You were funny, serious, and sensible – each at just the right times. You were tireless in your pursuit of excellence on behalf of people touched by cancer – millions of them! You were accepting of those who were new to this work and brought all of us along with a style and grace which we can only hope to imitate. You were a wise adviser, a thoughtful strategist, a talented messenger and a generous collaborator. Most of all, I am eternally grateful to call you my friend. You are and will be missed every day. Until we meet again, rest peacefully, my friend.
She has left an indelible mark on ASCO as well as the world. Her single mindedness about being centered on the PERSON, not the disease, slowly but surely changed ASCO. We went from the "lunatic fringe" to an integral part of every thing oncologists should be doing.
I can't be here -- training the next generation of Advance Practice Nurses at Hopkins on how to do palliative care -- but think daily of Ellen, her raised eyebrows and quiet exasperation, followed by her rock-solid determination to make us better. And she did.
I considered Ellen a good friend. She aided my family significantly by recommending researchers and care givers who could help my brother Will when he was diagnosed with pancreatic cancer. Thanks in part to Ellen's guidance, Will survived nearly a year instead of the initial three-month diagnosis.
Ellen helped me in numerous other ways, and we collaborated successfully on many projects and campaigns to support NCCS.
Although comparatively short in her physical stature, Ellen towered above all in advocating for cancer survivorship, and life.
Thank you, Ellen!
She was truly dedicated, selfless, self-deprecating, and got things done with good humor and grace. The world was better because she was here, and much the worse for her being gone.
One of my goals in life will be to live up to what she would want me to do.
With love and condolences to her family, friends, and her amazing colleagues at NCCS,