Longtime kwELITE Realtor Erin Nahorny will always remember July 30, 2012. — the day she learned her then-4-year-old son, Sammy, had cancer.
More specifically, Sammy had Stage 4 High-Risk Neuroblastoma with metastasis to the bones, bone marrow and lymph nodes – essentially cancer of the central nervous system.
Heartbroken, Nahorny was further devastated by learning cancer claims the lives of more children than all other childhood diseases, and that childhood cancer receives less than 4% of federal funding.
The community rallied behind the Nahorny family with massive fundraising efforts, which paved the way for Sammy’s Superheroes Foundation — a nonprofit committed to raising awareness and funding for life-saving research for ALL types of childhood cancer.
“To me, there’s nothing more important when it comes down to your child being sick and not having good options of treatment and care — it’s literally the most devastating thing I can imagine,” Nahorny said.
With September being National Childhood Cancer Awareness Month, Sammy’s Superheroes Foundation has two major events. Broker Renee Mueller and kwELITE have been longtime supporters of Sammy’s.
“Pediatric cancer affects us all in some way; the stats are staggering as far as how many families it affects,” Mueller said, noting she had two nieces diagnosed with different forms of cancer in 2020 and 2021 that are still in treatment. “It is life-changing for those families and has been really hard to watch. Treatment for those kids is almost inhumane, and I would think at the very least by this point we would have alternate treatments for these children.”
Sammy’s first big signature event of the month, “Glow Gold,” will take place from 3-6 p.m. Sept. 18th at Village Pointe Toyota in Omaha.
“The biggest thing is it’s a super fun event, and it’s a chance for us to create more advocates,” Nahorny said.
The afternoon will feature a bounce house, face-painting, food provided by Omaha-based restaurant PITCH, ax throwing, pony rides and beer provided by Tony Thomas’ Farm House Brewing Company, among other things.
Then on Sept. 25th, the “Family & Friends Sunday Funday Golf Scramble 2022” will take place at the Elks Country Club in Columbus.
Today, 14-year-old Sam’s cancer is active but stable. He enjoys his S.T.E.M. (Science, Technology, Engineering and Math) studies, and taking care of his chickens — yes, he has chickens in the backyard.
“He’s doing great,” Nahorny said, with a laugh.
With your help and support, Sammy’s Superheroes Foundation has donated more than $1,250,000 to childhood cancer research projects since 2013.
Nahorny said the support from her kwELITE and Parkway Plaza peers, as well as the community, mean the world to her.
“What really makes a difference is when people get involved and they don’t have to,” Nahorny said. “Our biggest goal is raising awareness, which leads to funding, and hopefully, eventually, a cure.”
To register for the upcoming events or learn about sponsorship opportunities, visit Sammysuperheroes.org.