The Marshall family spent last weekend screen printing 1,700 T-shirts in honor of Greendale resident Lauren Hill.
Those shirts, about 1,200 more ordered than expected, pay homage to a young woman with a rare and terminal form of brain cancer.
Not quite a year ago Hill was diagnosed with DIPG, or Diffuse Intrinsic Pontine Glioma, as a senior at Lawrenceburg High School. Her school rallied around her then, and LHS continues to rally around her now.
Her new school, the University of Mount St. Joseph, is making one of her final wishes come true. She will play a game of college basketball Sunday, Nov. 2, and on a much larger stage than she originally thought she would.
Back to the T-shirts, however, more specifically the place printing the shirts, Ohio Valley Screenprinting.
Brent Marshall is passionate about helping Hill’s cause, said LHS administrative assistant Judy Reese.
Reese and LHS girls basketball coach Zane White processed more than 1,700 T-shirt orders between Thursday, Oct. 17, and Thursday, Oct. 23.
It was a labor of love, said Reese about her and White’s involvement.
It also was a labor of love for Brent Marshall. His wife, Elaine, had breast cancer. “I know what I went through with my wife. There were mornings where she’d look so bad and felt so bad.... I can’t even imagine what Lisa and Brent (Hill) are going through,” said Brent Marshall.
“What I had was easy. It was a cake walk compared to others,” said Elaine Marshall, a former administrative assistant at South Dearborn Schools now working in a similar position at Ivy Tech.
She would see other people getting cancer treatments, and thanked God her cancer was not so severe as others.
Elaine Marshall credits the support of her husband, daughters Jordan and Taylor, extended family, friends, and the South Dearborn High School Softball team of 2011.
The team rallied around her and her daughter Jordan, then a SDHS senior who was a pitcher on the team, and that support helped Elaine Marshall get through her treatments.
“They knew when I was having a good day or a bad day. I never missed a game, even if I sat in the car to watch if it was raining,” said Elaine Marshall.
So when Elaine Marshall hears about how Lauren Hill keeps going through the support of her teammates at MSJ, she understands it.
The support from so many, “a ton of support really” from family and friends and softball team, helped the Marshall family immeasurably.
Now Elaine and Brent Marshall and their daughters are able to give back and help Lauren’s team.
“People think printing this many T-shirts is hard. It’s not. For every shirt I put on the machine I think about
Lauren and what her family is going through. That’s hard...” said Brent Marshall stopping to wipe a tear from his eye.
He originally thought there would be 400 or 500 shirts ordered, but the orders kept coming and coming. White told him Tuesday, Oct. 21, he thought there’d be about 1,000. But the orders kept coming, as Lauren Hill’s story spread from the Tri-State to the nation.
The Marshall’s aren’t making a profit off the shirts. “Yeah, he has really cheap labor,” said daughter Jordan.
“Lauren is going through this with such dignity and courage. It’s just a little way to do our part,” said Elaine Marshall.
White and Reese were receiving emails, texts and messages on their personal Facebook pages. They enlisted family and friends to help tally up the orders to get the information to Brent Marshall in time to order the T-Shirts.
Marshall had 24 boxes of shirts delivered Friday afternoon, Oct. 25. Those were printed up and delivered to LHS for Reese, White and a small army of volunteers to sort, tag and bag.
Pick ‘em up!
Folks who ordered T-shirts can pick them up in the LHS cafeteria from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. Saturday, Nov. 1.
People should use the side entrance across from Lawrenceburg Primary School. T-shirts will NOT be available for pick up before then.
Why go grey? Grey is the color chosen for brain cancer awareness. Brains are described as grey matter, and in the kind of tumor Lauren Hill has, Diffuse Intrinsic Pontine Glioma, her world will eventually go grey.
DIPG affects the pons portion of the brainstem, rendering nervous system function impossible. Symptoms include double vision, inability to close the eyelids completely, dropping one side of the face, and difficulty chewing and swallowing, according to The Cure Starts Now website.