Lisa Craine is a mother of two sons and is also married to her high school sweetheart, David. She is 100% Italian and loves to spend time in the kitchen cooking for her family. She was diagnosed with Stage IV Intrahepatic Cholangiocarcinoma in 2010 and given only six months to live. It has been a tough journey with two liver resections, 52 rounds of chemo in four different regimens, radiation three times and other complications, but Lisa manages to find the joy in her journey. Now she views the difficult times as life experience and feels it’s those things that make her a better advocate with more compassion.
Lisa connected with the Foundation after getting acquainted with the patient discussion boards. She reached out to a fellow patient after reading an article about her and felt like that began to offer her a lot of hope. She no longer felt isolated and alone on an island of a rare cancer. Lisa’s second opinion team, which she calls her “Survivor Partner Team” never took away her hope either. That is the hope she desires to share with other patients and families. Lisa has mentored dozens of patients through the CholangioConnect program, but is also actively involved in mentoring with the Cleveland Clinic Foundation, the Scott Hamilton CARES Foundation and Imerman’s Angels. She and her husband, David, founded Craine’s Cholangiocarcinoma Crew and together have raised over $205,000 strictly for research.
Additionally Lisa serves as a Research Advocate, Patient Advocate and is a member of the CARE Team. She helped to organize the CARE Team’s first mini-symposium last year, and has a second event planned for this summer in Chicago. She has given countless hours to patients all over the country, and often finds herself chair side of local patients undergoing treatment. Lisa helps others navigate second opinions, clinical trials and new treatment options every week over the phone. Lisa has presented her story at multiple conferences and is a passionate voice for rare cancer. Her dedication to passing hope on to others is clearly evident in all she does. It is a great honor and privilege for the Foundation to recognize Lisa Craine as the Volunteer of the Month!