Henry Ford Health System Doctors, Staff Serve Ice Cream to Benefit Cancer Patients and Research

September 11, 2020
Kate White

Serving in Grand Blanc at Ziggy’s Ice Cream, Owned by Brain Cancer Survivor Kate White

GRAND BLANC, Mich. – No one is happier to enjoy an ice cream cone – and serve them – than Kate White, a survivor of “the most deadly” form of brain cancer, glioblastoma, and co-owner of Ziggy’s Ice Cream with her husband, Rick. This weekend, she 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., neuro-oncologist 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 noon – 4 p.m. Saturday, Sept. 12, and Sunday, Sept. 13, at Ziggy’s Ice Cream, 11304 S. Saginaw St. Grand Blanc, MI 48439. All proceeds from the fundraiser will be donated.

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

Saturday, Sept. 12

  • Noon – 2 p.m.: James Snyder, D.O., neuro-oncologist at Henry Ford Cancer Institute
  • 2 – 4 p.m.: Lisa Scarpace, program manager of the Hermelin Brain Tumor Center

Sunday, Sept. 13

Kate was diagnosed with glioblastoma brain cancer in May of 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, Kate completed six weeks of radiation and chemotherapy under the care of Mira Shah, M.D., radiation oncologist at Henry Ford Hospital

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,” said Kate. “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  the Game On Cancer website.

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MEDIA CONTACT: Jeff Adkins / jadkins6@hfhs.org / 586.307.2027

About Henry Ford Health System
Under the leadership of President and CEO Wright L. Lassiter, III, Henry Ford Health System is a $6 billion integrated health system comprised of six hospitals, a health plan, and 250+ sites including medical centers, walk-in and urgent care clinics, pharmacy, eye care facilities and other healthcare retail.

Established in 1915 by auto industry pioneer Henry Ford, the health system now has 32,000 employees and remains home to the 1,900-member Henry Ford Medical Group, one of the nation’s oldest physician groups. An additional 2,200 physicians are also affiliated with the health system through the Henry Ford Physician Network.

Henry Ford is also one of the region’s major academic medical centers, receiving more than $90 million in annual research funding and remaining Michigan’s fourth largest NIH-funded institution. Also, an active participant in medical education and training, the health system has trained nearly 40% of physicians currently practicing in the state and also provides education and training for other health professionals including nurses, pharmacists, radiology and respiratory technicians.