Appleton Woman Honors Late Husband Spreading Kindness in Boston - WBAY

Appleton Woman Honors Late Husband Spreading Kindness in Boston

Colleen Wogernese Colleen Wogernese

An Appleton woman honors her husband's wishes after a long and courageous journey, sending a group from the Fox Valley to Boston last week.

"He cared and loved those kids more than anything in the world," Colleen Wogernese said of her late husband Chad.

He was diagnosed in November 2012 with Ewing sarcoma in his lung.

The rarity of the cancer targeting an adult, and in his lung, sent the family to Boston for treatment.

"We just went for it," Wogernese said. "We flew out there. We were there for seven weeks. He got his lung removed and he had a really rocky path."

The tumors just wouldn't go away.

"He knew when was ready," she recalls. "He told everybody, looked at everybody and said, 'I'm done' and fell asleep. It's hard but he's peaceful and not suffering."

Chad's spirit lives on through his wife and two kids.

Friday Wogernese returned to Brigham and Women's Hospital in Boston for the first time since Chad's treatment.

"We thought we would be coming back to visit healthy," she said. "So it's hard to come back the opposite way."

But now they're delivering 318 random acts of kindness around the hospital and city.


The number represents the number of days Chad battled cancer.

For families now in the midst of that struggle at the Thorton and Naumes House, where the family stayed, Wogernese delivered blankets and care packages.

"Chad was sitting in the hospital and he's like I want to do something to give back to all the people who have been so awesome to us," he said.

Around Boston they delivered lottery tickets and subway passes.

"I think it's helped her deal with the loss and set a good example for their two sons," Dr. Elizabeth Rinehart said, a Boston resident who let the family stay at her apartment.

The mission continues in the nonprofit Chad and Colleen started while in Boston.

It's called Superheroes Fighting Cancer.

Click here for the website.

Click here for the Facebook page.

The nonprofit specifically aims to help adult cancer patients by helping families with medical bills, lodging and groceries.

The group also grants wish trips for families.

Wogernese said they're now receiving 30 to 40 applications each month.

Click on the links above to learn more, help donate or apply for help.

"I just want them to know that he was the kind of person who would have helped anyone," she said referring to her two sons. "And that's the way they should live their lives."

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