Mrs. S, I won't Let you Down
Thursday, March 6 2014
Upon registering for the charity boxing event Haymakers for Hope, one topic was who, in particular, I would be fighting and raising money in honor of. That choice was easy: Diane Stambovsky. To sum it up, Mrs. S. (as I referred to her) was my second mother. I first met Mrs. S. at her home in Springfield after a middle school basketball game with a couple of her sons. She was cooking dinner for her 11 children (not a misprint…). I thought there was no possible way one could cook enough food to feed everyone until she pulled out the largest batch of chicken wings I ever saw. She fixed me a place at the table and I was soon hooked. With so many teenagers and friends around, the Stambo house quickly became my new hangout spot. You can imagine some of the shenanigans we found ourselves in over the years. Whether it was the late nights or stumbling in at dawn, Mrs. S. made it clear I always had a place to stay. I quickly became part of the family and she often referred to me as her “adopted son”. Throughout high school and college she helped me through some rough patches in my life and was always there to offer advice and point me in the right direction. After pulling me out of another jam, I remember her specifically saying “Bill, whatever you need, we are here for you. I won’t let you down”. Cancer is a complex disease that can attack our bodies in many ways. The best we can do is continue to fight against it by raising awareness and funding research. One of the toughest moments I’ve ever had was going to visit Mrs. S. in the hospital while already knowing what the outcome would be. She truly fought hard, but the disease eventually won. I never really had the chance to thank her for all that she had done for me and helping to fundraise in her name is truly an honor. Mrs. S. this fight is for you, I won’t let you down.