OUR JOURNEYS

Memorial story

Cheryl Lynn MassaroCheryl Lynn Massaro

Told by Tina Deitchman

In June 2002 we were having a support group potluck meeting at the home of Paul and Julie when a new member showed up. She had just been given the news that she had secondary pulmonary hypertension. Her name was Cheryl Massaro. She had her husband Bob with her and her father Bob also. Needless to say, she was devastated and clearly upset. After visiting with some members of our group she felt somewhat better. She continued to attend monthly meetings with her husband by her side and her father attended often. Soon she entered the Tracleer study and began to feel better. The better she felt the more she became involved in the PH group. In 2001 Julie decided to step down, so Cheryl became the co-leader of the PH group. On September 18, 2001, Cheryl’s first project was obtaining and drawing up a proclamation for PH awareness week with then mayor Marylou Makepeace.

Cheryl continued to work with Stacy Durham until June 2003 when Stacy stepped down as leader. She became facilitator of the Southern Colorado PH support group and Pat Patterson became Co-facilitator. Cheryl got busy right away with educating and bringing forth awareness for PH.. She, along with various other members of the group, presented on PH awareness at St. Thomas Moore Hospital in Canon City, St. Mary Corwin Hospital in Pueblo, the Colorado Springs Fire Dept., and several other support groups. She was also featured in three different newspaper articles about PH. She was an avid member of the Pulmonary Hypertension Association (PHA), publishing several articles for their quarterly newsletter, Pathlight. She was also a volunteer for the 1-800 patient Support Line. At PHA’s 2006 conference, Cheryl was awarded the “PH support group leader of the year” award. Although not able to attend the conference, she later received the award from Dr. Karen Fagan. This was one of her greatest accomplishments. I’m sure she had several other “tricks” up her sleeve that I didn’t know about. The PH community will dearly miss her as we all will.

Tina Deitchman
Co-facilitator of Southern Colorado
Support Group

 

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The National Organization for Rare Disorders (NORD) awarded PHA the Abbey S. Meyers Leadership Award in 2012 for outstanding service to PHA members in advocacy, education and other key areas.