Kevin Barnett, Vice Chair


Son to Mary

I’m proud to be one of the Founders of BSNCF. We’ve done some meaningful work over the last 15 years and I’m looking forward to the next chapter.

Without a doubt, the toughest thing I’ve dealt with in my life has been losing the woman who gave me life—my mother, Mary.  While we lost her much too young and far too soon, I’ve learned that there is never a good time to lose someone you love.  That said, to simply say I loved my mom would be a massive understatement.  She was beautiful inside and out, and the most selfless person I’ve ever known.  Even in her final moments, when she was informed by her doctors that she would succumb to this horrible disease her response was, “My children…”  She was always thinking of others.  This is one of the many reasons I’m so proud to have this foundation honor her memory and carry out her legacy of deeply caring for others.

When I first received word that my mom had been diagnosed with cancer, my entire world seemed to stop spinning. I suppose if there’s a silver lining to such a situation, it’s that what really matters in life becomes apparent. That said, I didn’t quite know how to handle the news of my mother’s illness. However, unlike many, I was fortunate enough to have someone to look to for guidance and support—my friend, John Searing. John lost his beloved sister, Jenny, to ovarian cancer. His experience lent much light to what my family and I were going through. While John and I became closer, bonding through the loss of two of our nearest and dearest, we both agreed the worst feeling was that of feeling helpless. We also agreed that the best way to fight this feeling would be to help others. This is what inspired The Barnett-Searing National Cancer Foundation. We wanted to do what we could to support cancer patients, and their families and friends, through their most trying times. We also wanted to fund cancer research in the hopes that another family would not have to endure the same pain and loss.

My sincerest thanks to every single person who has supported the foundation over the years. It has never gone unnoticed or unappreciated.  It has also kept Jenny and Mary’s lights burning bright, as it has kept them both very much alive in the hearts and minds of their family and friends.  Maybe even more meaningful to John and myself, the foundation has introduced these two amazing women to people who didn’t have the privilege of knowing them while they were with us.

We look forward to speaking with you soon as we begin this new phase of the foundation, continuing our mission to help care for cancer patients and their loved ones.