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Meet Todd Phillips, MMRF 2023 Walk/Run: Charlotte Spirit of Hope Honoree

Todd Phillips MMRF Spirit of Hope

How did you get involved with the MMRF?

Todd was diagnosed with MGUS (monoclonal gammopathy of undetermined significance) in June, 2016. Knowing an eventual diagnosis of multiple myeloma was potentially on the horizon, we took an active interest in learning all we could about what we might be facing, treatments, and ongoing lifestyle changes.

Why did you choose to participate in the MMRF Walk/Run?

This was a celebration of overcoming a successful yet challenging treatment. We were excited to raise money to help others facing the same diagnosis. Our hope is that any funds raised will help make discovery and subsequent treatment easier, effective, and more efficient.

The Spirit of Hope is given to “individuals/groups who inspire hope and show extraordinary commitment to the MMRF.”  What does being given the award mean to you?

It means the world. Fundraising for and participating in the walk was one of the highlights of our year. Those who couldn’t attend raised money. Those who could celebrated our victory as a family. Sharing our story like this will hopefully give others strength as they begin or sustain their journey. We hope that we can provide every single patient with the support we received, either through fundraising, kind thoughts, or continued in-person meetings, such as MMRF fundraisers.

How have you found perseverance in light of obstacles? Please share any stories that have given you hope.

Every single doctor, nurse, aide, phlebotomist, receptionist, fundraiser, and caregiver we met was extremely invested in my health as a patient and success as a survivor. How could I not fight with a support group like that?

Do you have a favorite mantra, quote, lyric that gives you strength?

“The only way out is through.”  We said that every day—through the pain, the triumphs, the fevers, the isolation periods, through every successful meeting with our team. Through the good and the bad, we knew the only way to get into remission was by going through the full treatment process.  Knowing there were no shortcuts required tenacity and strength as a family as we conquered every obstacle and reached every milestone.

Anything to add?

In the movie Apollo 13, when everything is at its most dark, one of the characters expresses doubt about survival. NASA Flight Director Gene Kranz (played by Ed Harris) turns to the actor and says, “With all due respect, sir, I believe this is gonna be our finest hour.” For all of you patients, friends, family, and caregivers, this is your finest hour.

The Multiple Myeloma Research Foundation is delighted to recognize Todd Phillips as the MMRF Spirit of Hope Honoree at the 2023 MMRF Team for Cures: Charlotte Walk/Run.

This award is presented at every Walk/Run to a patient, caregiver, or family who inspires hope through their resilience, perseverance, and dedication to the MMRF and its mission. Donate to Todd Phillips’ “Go Team Phillips” 2023 Walk/Run fundraising page to accelerate a cure today!