Elyse Pantke White
Elyse Pantke White lived her life with strength, compassion and grace. She was at her best when helping others. No matter what was going on in her own life, she was more interested in what was going on in yours and how she could help.
Elyse’s family, both immediate and extended, was always the most important thing to her. She was proud of her Greek heritage and enjoyed spending time with that community. As she got older, her friends began to realize what an incredible person she was and they, too, were brought into the fold and became an extension of her family.
In 1997, Elyse got engaged to a man that indulged her, made her laugh, and loved her with everything he had. She couldn’t have been happier. Ross and Elyse were married in 1998 and began their life together. They loved to travel and experience new cultures in places like Tahiti, Paris and Belize. To celebrate their 10th wedding anniversary, they had plans for a spectacular trip to Greece in the summer of 2008.
When she was diagnosed with breast cancer on November 14, 2003, at the age of 29, she met the challenge like any other – head-on. Elyse knew it was going to be difficult but she also knew that she would give it all she had.
After the diagnosis, charity and fundraising became a much larger part of her life. As an extension of her desire to help, she became involved in many worthwhile endeavors including the Greek Orthodox Church, St. Vincent de Paul and the Huntsman Cancer Foundation.
Through it all (mastectomy, hip replacement, numerous chemotherapy sessions, multiple radiation treatments, hair loss, experimental drugs and more), Elyse had an amazing smile and unwavering positive attitude. She never questioned her choice to fight and she never gave up. And that circle of family and friends that she had spent her entire life building, nurturing and teaching came to her side and supported her throughout the entire experience.
We continue to support Elyse’s vision of positive energy and hard work through the Elyse Pantke White Foundation. Our volunteers embrace these principles just as Elyse would do…shoulder to shoulder, with a plan. We will continue working to cure breast cancer that has affected so many of our loved ones.
Elyse never made it to Greece, but with your support, others will be sure to see their own dreams come true.
No one’s life should end at the young age of 34.