Posts Tagged ‘breast cancer’

Sarah and Joshua Leavell

A Wolf Mom is in need.

Sarah Leavell, whose daughters Anya and Kaitlyn are scholar/athletes at Coupeville High School, has been diagnosed with breast cancer at age 38 and faces an uphill battle.

While the cancer was detected early, she may require multiple rounds of chemotherapy, as well as surgery.

Along with always being in the stands for her daughter’s games, Sarah has worked for a decade at The Seaside Spa & Salon.

Her boss, Aaron Wiley, has launched a GoFundMe to allow the community to reach out and help the Leavell family, which also includes husband Joshua (and his truly remarkable beard).

“While Sarah’s team of doctors are optimistic, there is no doubt that she is facing the fight of her life,” Wiley said.

“Now, if you know Sarah, you know she has a quiet strength and determination that does not quit until the job is done.

“She lives her life like that and will be treating this cancer journey the same way. She’s not going to quit.”

The GoFundMe will help cover medical bills, gas to get back and forth to doctor appointments, and Sarah’s loss of income.

“Please help lift her spirits,” Wiley said. “Relieve some of the stress, so she can focus on what she needs to … beating cancer!”


To help the Leavell family, pop over to:


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Charlie and Tammy Smith

Enjoy the outdoors and help one of Coupeville’s favorite Wolf Moms.

As Tammy Smith fights breast cancer, daughters Ciara and Ema have launched a number of fundraisers to help their mom.

Their primary goal has been to give her a professionally crafted wig — using their own hair — as her body battles through chemotherapy.

A GoFundMe — https://www.gofundme.com/f/help-tamtam-save-the-tatas?qid=1a74bcca7e65e30bde2db1bb489b0aae — has received 50 donations.

And now the Smith sisters are holding a Color Run 5K Saturday, Apr. 30.

The event will start at 9 AM at Coupeville’s Living Hope Foursquare Church (105 NW Broadway).

Kids, dogs, scooters, and strollers are welcome, and suggested donations are $10 for individuals and $25 for a group of four.

To sign up, email your names to run4tamtam@gmail.com.

To donate, use this QR code:

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Charlie and Tammy Smith

One of the kindest of all Wolf moms could use some help from her massive fan club.

Tammy Smith, who brightened up Coupeville considerably during her time cheering for her daughters, is battling cancer for a second time.

After defeating breast cancer once before, the irrepressible one is back at it, squaring off with a triple negative breast cancer diagnosis.

Smith, who now lives in Arizona with husband Charlie — a pretty big ray of sunshine himself — faces a 24-week working relationship with chemo treatments.

“Mom is currently in good spirits and is as active as ever,” said daughter Ema.

“She’s hiking, and walking, and getting lots of rest, but we know that the road may get harder as treatments go by.

“It is very possible that mom will start to lose her hair at any point.”

With that in mind, Ema and older sister Ciara plan to donate their hair and have a Seattle company, Compassionate Creations, craft a wig for Tammy.

The sisters are hopeful the many communities positively affected by their mom will help support their effort.

They plan to stage a 5K in Coupeville, and have launched a GoFundMe, with the proceeds going directly to cover the cost of the personalized wig, and aid with medical bills.

“We want to express on behalf of our family how thankful we are for the love, prayers, and support we have already received from so many of you,” Ema Smith said.

“Once the wig is made and delivered you can expect a fashion show from Tam Tam herself!

“We hope you’ll join us in supporting our mom in whatever way you can right now, and know that we will be grateful for any and all support given.”


For more info and to donate, pop over to:


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A great team playing for a great cause.

When the Coupeville High School volleyball squads return to action Tuesday, Oct. 5, the Wolves will be playing for more than just themselves.

Coupeville’s opponent will be Concrete, with JV set to tip at 5:00 PM, varsity at 6:30.

But the home games are also tagged as Dig Pink Night, with the Wolves and Lions raising funds to fight breast cancer.

All proceeds go to pay for mammography’s through WhidbeyHealth.

If you’re there in person, you’ll be able to participate in a raffle and win prizes.

But, if you can’t make it and want to still help, donations can be made by popping over here, and choosing “Mammography-Dig Pink” as the Fund Designation:



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Kristin Hurlburt leaves behind a legacy of love, of hope, and of kindness. (Photos courtesy Sylvia Hurlburt)

One by one, they followed her home.

Drawn by her smile, which crinkled at the edges, mischievous joy in her eyes.

Brought close by the tenderness which flowed through every action.

Safe in her care, loved in her presence, the animals always followed Kristin Hurlburt, when she was a young child, and when she was a grown woman.

And she welcomed each and every one of them, from the rat she smuggled into the house in her pocket, to the dogs and cats, chickens and cows, and, most of all, her beloved horses.

Kristen was the youngest of Rex and Sonia Miller’s three children, born in Edmonds, Washington in 1965, following eagerly behind older siblings Monica and Greg.

Her parents let their bright-eyed daughter fully embrace her connection with animals.

Even the rat was welcome in their home, living out its life covered by Kristin’s love.

The animals came and went, embraced with the same gentle touch she would bring to raising her own children, Larry and Sylvia, who brought a glow of pride to her cheeks when she talked about them.

Kristen had landed on Whidbey Island in 1975, after a family move when she was in the 5th grade, and she blossomed while attending local schools.

A 1983 graduate of South Whidbey High School, she met her future husband, Troy Hurlburt, while in her early twenties.

He roared past on his motorcycle, blasting his music while on his way to work, while Kristin was the girl who rode her horse everywhere.

One zoomed along, the other ambled, but they saw each other almost every day, and the seed was planted.

After officially meeting at Joli Farms in Freeland, they married in 1992, and began their own family.

As Larry and Sylvia grew up, both competing in track and field, while Sylvia danced and was a cheer captain, Kristin’s children took after their mother in so many ways.

One small grace note was their complete support of one another in all they did, a trait which brought a quiet smile to their mother’s face.

Kristin’s joy carried over to her “other” children as well, as she embraced Larry and Sylvia’s classmates, with a gentle word, a smile, and support which never waned.

Luxuriating under a rare blazing sun, or holding on to her coat with an iron grip as the rain and wind swirled around her, she was a constant presence at school events.

Always looking like she was having the time of her life.

“It was special,” said Sylvia. “She helped me feel more confident, and when I could find her in the crowd it made me smile.

“Knowing she was there was always a good feeling for me, like a comfort almost.”

Working in the lunchroom at Coupeville High School, Kristin showed the same grace to every student, and those she shared the kitchen with.

“She is truly a soul who can never be replaced,” said co-worker Bobbie Massengale.

As friendly and kind as Kristin was, she was a fighter, as well, holding off the breast cancer which entered her life in 2019.

Less than a year later, she was in remission, only to have the disease return in 2021.

“While she showed unparalleled resolve against her relentless foe, her body had become too weak, and could no longer support her efforts,” said her son.

Kristin’s final day on Earth came June 25, as she passed away peacefully after spending the morning with family.

She leaves behind a legacy of love, of hope, and of kindness.

Kristin’s smile is reflected back at the world by her granddaughter, Kinslee, who adored her Nanna K.

Her kindness echoes through the actions of her children, her husband, and her family.

And her spirit? Her love?

Travel back in time, look into the eyes of every animal whose path she crossed, and you will know.

From her first pony, Friskey, to her last horse, Bar, from the rat who found a new home, to the dogs and cats, chickens and cows, all of whom found their soul mate in her, the answer is simple.

Kristin, in small ways and big ways, in acts of kindness, in choosing to seek out positivity above all else, changed all of our lives for the better.

Animal or human, if you knew her, you knew love. Always.


There will be a graveside service July 24, 2021 at 11:00 AM at Sunnyside Cemetery with a reception to follow at Living Hope Church at noon.

In lieu of flowers, please consider donating to WAIF in Kristin’s name.

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