Kate White of Ziggy's Ice Cream

Glioblastoma patient Kate White at a school in Grand Blanc where she works as a librarian

      No one is happier to enjoy an ice cream cone — and serve them — than Kate White, a survivor of a deadly form of brain cancer, glioblastoma, and co-owner of Ziggy’s Ice Cream in Grand Blanc with her husband, Rick.

      This weekend, White of Grand Blanc, will welcome several members of her Henry Ford care team as guest ice cream scoopers at Ziggy’s. She hopes the fundraiser will bring in members of the community to enjoy some ice cream and support two causes that are close to her heart — Henry Ford’s Hermelin Brain Tumor Center and Game On Cancer.  

      “While cancer, especially brain cancer, is one of the scariest diagnoses a person can receive, it’s important to remember that treatment options have come a long way in recent years and continue to improve through research and innovation,” said James Snyder, D.O., neurosurgeon at Henry Ford Health System. “The support of our donors and members of the community at events like this one at Ziggy’s has had a tremendous impact on research and providing assistance for patients who need it as they go through treatment.” 

      Doctors and staff from Henry Ford Health System will serve ice cream from 12- 4 p.m. Saturday, Sept. 12, and Sunday, Sept. 13, at Ziggy’s Ice Cream, 11304 S. Saginaw St. Grand Blanc. All proceeds from the fundraiser will be donated. 

      While the celebrity ice cream scoopers will be onsite from 12-4 p.m. each day, the fundraiser will take place from 12-9 p.m. both days. The ice cream scoopers at Ziggy’s will include: 

SATURDAY, SEPT. 12 

12-2 p.m. — James Snyder, D.O., neuro-oncologist at Henry Ford Health System  

2-4 p.m. — Lisa Scarpace, program manager of the Hermelin Brain Tumor Center 

SUNDAY, SEPT. 13 

12-2 p.m. — Adam Robin, M.D., neurosurgeon at Henry Ford Health System 

2-4 p.m. — Vrushali Dabak, M.D., medical oncologist at Henry Ford Health System 

      White was diagnosed with glioblastoma brain cancer in May 2019 after experiencing severe and consistent headaches she believed were caused by stress. Eventually, the pain got so severe she had to take migraine medication each morning to get through the day, which ultimately led to her diagnosis when her symptoms worsened. After undergoing an “awake” craniotomy by Dr. Robin, White completed six weeks of radiation and chemotherapy under the care of Mira Shah, M.D., radiation oncologist at Henry Ford Hospital and Dr. Snyder.

      While her road to recovery hasn’t been easy, she is back to working full-time and feeling like herself again. She suffered from short-term memory loss after the surgery and wasn’t sure if she would have the cognitive abilities and stamina to continue her work as a doctoral student. But with the support of her professors, colleagues, family and friends, she is back in school to complete the Ph.D. she started before her diagnosis, while also running Ziggy’s Ice Cream. 

      “I am positive that I am here today to tell my story because of the fast action and outstanding treatment provided by my Henry Ford care team,” White said. “This experience has made me much more empathetic and grateful to be alive. If my story can offer hope, optimism and the willingness to be brave in the fight, then I feel like I am giving back to those who’ve cared for me, those who are also on this journey, and those diagnosed after me.” 

      Game On Cancer is a partnership among Henry Ford Health System, The Detroit Lions and The Detroit Pistons that provides assistance to cancer patients and supports critical cancer research funding. Now in its sixth year, Game On Cancer has raised more than $5 million, thanks to the support of donors and fundraiser participants. 

      To learn more about how you can help support patients at Henry Ford Cancer Institute, visit henryford.com/GameOnCancer.  

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