How the ‘C95 Radio Marathon for Breast Cancer Research’ Began
The life of a radio host is a unique one. It’s a combination of performance and information sharing. There are long hours on the air, plus appearing at events and fundraisers in the community. It’s this unique environment that creates a special bond among those who work in the industry, and their listeners. They become a family.
In 2000, Rob Suski (Left), Lisa Rendall (Right) and Rambling Dave (Second from right) from C95 were the number one morning show team in Saskatoon. Ratings were good and they were having fun.
Rob will never forget the day his co-host and friend, Lisa Rendall, started mentioning her sore neck. When the pain got worse, Lisa went to her doctor. Testing revealed she had stage four breast cancer that had spread, weakening the bones in her neck; her vertebrae were collapsing on top of each other. That very day she was put into a halo to stabilize her spine. The shock of the diagnosis affected everyone at the station. As a family does, C95 rallied around Lisa. They wanted to do whatever they could for her. So they started the C95 Radio Marathon for Breast Cancer Research with proceeds benefitting research at the Saskatchewan Cancer Agency.
While Lisa’s future was uncertain, the radio station saw how the work of the Agency researchers could have long-term benefits for breast cancer. They wanted the money raised to be used to explore new drug therapies that could help patients attack the disease in order to live longer, healthier lives.
“Because of those research dollars, new drugs have been discovered and developed and Lisa might have had a fighting chance to live longer” explains Shauna Foster (Second from left), a friend and colleague of Lisa’s. Rob and Shauna co-host the morning show on C95, the most listened to show in Saskatoon. They have hosted the C95 Radio Marathon for Breast Cancer Research for 23 years.
Rawlco Radio coworkers say Lisa was a huge inspiration, living life to the fullest even after receiving a terminal diagnosis. Her treatment got her out of a halo and well enough to leave the hospital. She would receive various treatments over the course of her 11 years with cancer. None of it slowing down her zest to do all those things with her husband she’d always wanted to, including traveling as much as possible. How Lisa lived is a constant reminder and motivation for the C95 team when the marathon rolls around.
Rob and Shauna remember meeting breast cancer survivor, Patty, at the marathon a couple of years after it began, “She had a boy in Kindergarten at the time. She said her dream was to watch him graduate high school. Patty was very sick, I think stage three. Patty did get on a very good drug and was declared cancer-free. We ended up meeting her 26-year-old son.”
Lisa Rendall passed away on April 13, 2011, she was 46. Her legacy lives on today through the C95 Radio Marathon, the C95 Family (listeners), and the contributions they make year after year.
“I think of Lisa, and the amazing generosity of our listeners when I hear that number,” says Shauna. “I wish she could be here to see what her legacy is leaving behind.” It’s a legacy that has helped so many people battling breast cancer and will continue to inspire many more.
For information on the C95 Radio Marathon or to donate click here.