Putting the Personal in Personal Fundraising Pages

As you read the stories below, you’ll see how easy a Web of Friends campaign can be, with each fundraiser adding their own personal twist to the program.

With 26.2 Miles, a Son Honors His Mother’s Battle


Anthony Piatek runs the Chicago Marathon each October in honor of his mother, Mary Jo, who has PH. Anthony says, “I admire [my mother’s] strength in battling pulmonary hypertension each and every day. She is a warrior. If she can go on each day fighting this battle, then I can easily run 26.2 miles.” Through hard work and persistence, Anthony has raised more than $2,400 in honor of his mom to support the fight against PH. Read their story

The The Piatek Family The The Piatek Family

The McMullens’ Rally to Relay


Mary McMullen lost her battle with PH in August 2012. Her family felt a strong responsibility to carry on Mary’s legacy, so they decided to fundraise to support the fight against PH in her memory. Her family — husband, Tim, and children, Erin, Timmy and Eddie — ran the Baltimore Running Festival marathon as a relay team in her memory. A second relay team of extended family members also ran and helped raise funds in Mary’s memory. Together they raised more than $10,500 in Mary’s memory. Read their story

The two relay teams (the McMullens family members and their extended family) say thank you to supporters at the end of the relay marathon. The two relay teams (the McMullens
family members and their extended
family) say thank you to supporters
at the end of the relay marathon.

The McNiff Family


Mimi McNiff, age 5, was diagnosed with pulmonary hypertension in early 2012. Her mother, Britt, turned to running to help cope with the changes and challenges of managing Mimi's PH. When Britt learned she could fundraise for PHA by running a nearby half marathon, she decided to run in honor of Mimi. Britt and her husband, Sean, began fighting back by raising as much money for research as possible. Sean and Britt raised more than $12,600 for the Robyn Barst Pediatric PH Research and Mentoring Program with their first fundraiser. Read Britt's story of how Mimi was diagnosed and how she and Sean organized a successful fundraiser.

The McNiffs created this card to educate their community about Mimi’s PH and garner support for their fundraiser The McNiffs created this card to educate
their community about Mimi's PH and garner support for their fundraiser.

Brooke Gunter


In February 2012 Brooke Gunter, sister to PH Patient Jake Gunter, created a personal fundraising page to, “tell people about my little brother and raise awareness of PH. I wanted to show him just how many people believed that his life was worth fighting for.”

Coming to terms with the seriousness of Jake’s PH diagnosis was difficult for the whole Gunter family. Eventually Brooke and her mother, Ellice decided it was time to face reality. “One thing was for certain, we could no longer ignore it. We needed to get involved, to fight back.” Mother and daughter teamed up to raise money in honor of Jake and in support of PHA. Read the whole story of how the Gunter family got involved in fundraising to fight PH.

Brooke (center) and Ellice (second from right) with Jake (far left) and the rest of the Gunter familyBrooke (center) and Ellice (second from
right) with Jake (far left) and the rest
of the Gunter family

Steve White


Steve, a PHA board member, was looking for a way to mark his 60th birthday and recognize what would have been his daughter Christen’s 30th birthday. Christen passed away from PH in 2002 and Steve saw an opportunity to honor her memory.

“At the beginning of 2009 I became painfully aware of my upcoming 60th birthday,” Steve said. “I wanted to channel my friends and family’s desire to celebrate the milestone into something that would provide a lasting benefit outside of presents.” And thus the “60/30 virtual birthday party” was born.

“The fundraising page was a great opportunity to tell Christen’s story, raise awareness about PH and allow my friends and family get involved with very little effort,” Steve said. “It was actually kind of fun!”

             WhiteSteve White's Daughter, Christen

Doreen Lucadamo


Doreen, a PHA staff member and daughter of PH patient Roberta Granai, had her interest piqued when she saw Steve White’s personal fundraising page. In the weeks leading up to her birthday this year Doreen sent her own Web of Friends page out to friends and family.

“A personal fundraising page seemed like such an easy way to engage my loved ones in an organization that was important to me,” Doreen said. Doreen had particular success promoting her page on her Facebook page. A few times a day Doreen would update her status encouraging her Facebook friends to donate to her cause. Everyone from her real estate agent, to a childhood camp friend got involved. “People donated five, 10 or 15 dollars and it really made a difference,” Doreen said.

Doreen and her momDoreen and her mother Roberta

Larry Fox


Larry was looking for a way to get involved during PH Awareness Month in November 2009. His wife Judy had been diagnosed with PH in 1998 and they have been involved with PHA ever since. After finding Web of Friends on PHA’s website Larry thought that this was a “no brainer” way to get involved.

“We can’t find a cure without the dollars,” Larry said. “I wanted to do something that would further the cause.” As an incentive to help encourage friends and family donate, the Fox’s decided to do a drawing of a new IPod to those who gave $10 to their fundraising page. “I wanted to spur on donations,” Larry said. “But I also wanted to give something back to those who were helping out.”

Whether you’re still deciding to do a Web of Friends campaign or ready to get started, PHA is here to help! We can assist you at every point in this process — and we have a few tricks up our sleeve that we’d like to share. Contact or call 301-565-3004 x742.

Larry and Judy FoxLarry and Judy Fox at PHA’s Gala in
Rochester, Minnesota.






FacebookTwitterInstagram iconLinkedInYouTube

For optimal viewing of, please use a standards-compliant browser such as Google Chrome or Firefox.

The information provided on the PHA website is provided for general information only. It is not intended as legal, medical or other professional advice, and should not be relied upon as a substitute for consultations with qualified professionals who are familiar with your individual needs.

801 Roeder Road, Ste. 1000, Silver Spring, MD 20910   Patient-to-Patient Support Line: 1-800-748-7274
    Privacy Policy    Provide Feedback & Report Bugs

Designed by Matrix Group International, Inc.® | © 2016 Pulmonary Hypertension Association. All Rights Reserved.


The National Organization for Rare Disorders (NORD) awarded PHA the Abbey S. Meyers Leadership Award in 2012 for outstanding service to PHA members in advocacy, education and other key areas.