Tulip-planting event honors cancer victims, supporters
October 16, 2013 2:54PM
Oak Lawn firefighter Robert Wesselhoff plants some tulip bulbs at the 2012 event. | File photo
Updated: November 21, 2013 6:13AM
Advocate Christ Medical Center will host patients and former patients of its Cancer Institute and its Advocate Christ Center for Breast Care at a special ceremony at 12:30 p.m. Oct. 22.
Several thousand tulip bulbs will be planted in honor of those whose lives have been touched by cancer.
“These tulips are intended to serve as a living reminder that screening increases the chances of detecting breast and other types of cancers early, when they are most curable,” Dr. Barbara Krueger, medical director of the breast care center, said in a press release. “Partnering with our patients is one of the most powerful weapons we have to battle this disease.”
The annual tulip bulb dedication ceremony is open to area residents at the Center for Breast Care, 4545 W. 103rd St., Oak Lawn.
“For cancer survivors, newly diagnosed patients and families, the flowers that sprout from the bulbs represent hope and courage,” said nurse Peggy Kupres, coordinator of survivorship and external relations for the Cancer Institute and a 12-year breast cancer survivor. “Just as the bulbs must survive the winter in order to bloom, so patients must go through oftentimes difficult treatments before they can blossom in freedom from cancer.”
In the spring, after the flowers have bloomed, the bulbs will be unearthed and given to those who bought them. Unclaimed bulbs will be distributed to newly diagnosed breast cancer patients for planting in their personal gardens of hope, Kupres said in the release.
Proceeds from the sale of the bulbs at Christ Medical Center will be used by the Center for Breast Care and the Cancer Institute for development and buying educational materials for cancer patients.
Bruno Galatte Landscape, of Tinley Park, donates the tulip bulbs for the annual ceremonial plantings, the release said.