The Multiple Myeloma Research Foundation and Partners Announce a Hike Through Grand Canyon National Park To Raise Funds For Cancer Research

The initiative is part of Moving Mountains for Multiple Myeloma program

CRANBURY, N.J.--()--A dedicated team of 15 individuals will take on the challenge of trekking through Grand Canyon National Park via the Havasupai Indian Reservation on May 2. The fundraiser is a part of Moving Mountains for Multiple Myeloma (MM4MM), a joint initiative between the Multiple Myeloma Research Foundation (MMRF) and CURE Media Group, and is sponsored by Amgen. This year’s team, comprised of patients, caregivers, family members, advocates and medical professionals, will take on this challenge to raise awareness and funds to advance research for multiple myeloma.

“As a patient-founded organization, we work seamlessly with the entire myeloma community to accelerate precision medicine with the goal of finding a cure for every patient,” said Paul Giusti, CEO of the Multiple Myeloma Research Foundation. “Inspiring events like this, help raise awareness and critical funds to continue our mission.”

This 3-day trek will take the team on one of the most challenging and iconic hikes in the country, which rewards hikers with stunning views of Grand Canyon National Park and waterfalls with drops ranging from 75-200 feet. The team will trek eight to ten hours each day climbing deep into – and back out of – the Grand Canyon. The team includes the following five patients living with multiple myeloma:

  • Patti Bivona has been actively participating in events to benefit the multiple myeloma community since her diagnosis. As a smoldering myeloma patient, Patti understands the daily challenges faced by patients. By hiking down Grand Canyon, she aims to inspire other patients and raise funds to develop new treatments.
  • Jessie Daw was diagnosed with smoldering multiple myeloma in 2016. Inspired by the participants on previous MM4MM trips, Jessie looks forward to building long-lasting relationships with her fellow myeloma-connected hikers and bonding with her sister, who will take on this hike along her side.
  • Brian Keller was diagnosed with multiple myeloma in 2016. Since then, he has experienced radiation, drug therapy and a stem cell transplant. By participating in this hike, Brian is giving back to the multiple myeloma community and hopes to inspire newly diagnosed patients to continue to pursue their dreams after diagnosis.
  • Tamara Smith was diagnosed with IgA lambda light chain smoldering myeloma in 2017. At the same time, she was diagnosed with common variable immune deficiency. Tamara takes on this trek to demonstrate to herself and to others how patients can thrive post-diagnosis.
  • Jamie Tinschert was diagnosed with multiple myeloma in June 2012. Six months after receiving a stem cell transplant, Jamie ran in one of the MMRF Team for Cures 5K events. Since then she has been an active runner in various marathons and looks forward to pushing herself beyond perceived limits during this rigorous hike.

“We are thrilled to be a continuous part of this incredible initiative that brings together people from all over with a shared goal of fighting multiple myeloma,” said Michael J. Hennessy Jr., president of MJH Associates, Inc., parent company of CURE Media Group. “We trust that this event brings hope and supports current patients, their caregivers and healthcare professionals to continue to fight this disease.”

The participants will begin their 3-day journey by hiking down over 2,000 feet into Grand Canyon. Next, the hikers will use rope chains and ladders to reach the pools and falls below. The journey will end with hikers climbing back up over 2,000 feet through dry and hot trail to complete this epic challenge.

“Amgen is proud to be working with the MMRF and CURE on Moving Mountains for Multiple Myeloma, as this program has played a significant role in raising funds to support new treatment options for patients living with multiple myeloma,” said Christophe Bourdon, vice president and general manager Oncology Business Unit at Amgen. “Like the MMRF, Amgen is deeply committed to advancing multiple myeloma research as evidenced through our clinical development program and pipeline, and we’re grateful for the opportunity to be a part of this initiative.”

Amgen is a sponsor of Moving Mountains for Multiple Myeloma.

To learn more about Moving Mountains for Multiple Myeloma and to donate to this team, please visit

About Moving Mountains for Multiple Myeloma

Moving Mountains for Multiple Myeloma (MM4MM) is collaboration between CURE Media Group and the Multiple Myeloma Research Foundation (MMRF) to raise awareness and funds for myeloma research. In 2018, Amgen and Celgene Corporation have joined the effort as sponsors. In addition to the Havasu Falls trek, the program will take on two additional treks in 2018: A MM4MM team of 16, sponsored by Celgene, will trek through the dramatic landscape of Iceland in August; In October, another Amgen sponsored team will take on Everest Base Camp. To date, the MM4MM Program has raised over $1.6 million for myeloma research and has included 34 myeloma patients on their 7 climbs. Funds raised by the Moving Mountains for Multiple Myeloma endeavors will go directly to research, supporting the MMRF mission. For more information, visit

About Multiple Myeloma

Multiple myeloma is a cancer of the plasma cell. It is the second most common blood cancer. An estimated 30,000 adults will be diagnosed this year and 12,600 people are predicted to die from the disease.

About the Multiple Myeloma Research Foundation (MMRF)

The mission of the Multiple Myeloma Research Foundation (MMRF) is to find a cure for multiple myeloma by relentlessly pursuing innovation that accelerates the development of next-generation treatments to extend the lives of patients. Founded in 1998 by Kathy Giusti, a multiple myeloma patient, and her twin sister Karen Andrews as a 501(c) (3) nonprofit organization, the MMRF is a world-recognized leader in cancer research. Together with its partners, the MMRF has created the only end-to-end solution in precision medicine and the single largest genomic dataset in all cancers. The MMRF continues to disrupt the industry today, as a pioneer and leader at the helm of new research efforts. Since its inception, the organization has raised over $400 million and directs nearly 90% of the total funds to research and related programs. To learn more, visit

About CURE Media Group

CURE Media Group is the leading resource for cancer updates, research and education. It combines a full suite of media products, including its industry-leading website,; innovative video programs, such as CURE Connections®; a series of widely attended live events; and CURE® magazine, which reaches over 1 million readers. CURE Media Group is part of the Cranbury, New Jersey-based MJH Associates Inc. family of businesses, which includes the acclaimed OncLive® ( platform of resources for the practicing oncologist. For more information, visit or

About Amgen’s Commitment to Oncology

Amgen Oncology is committed to helping patients take on some of the toughest cancers, such as those that have been resistant to drugs, those that progress rapidly through the body and those where limited treatment options exist. Amgen’s supportive care treatments help patients combat certain side effects of strong chemotherapy, and our targeted medicines and immunotherapies focus on more than a dozen different malignancies, ranging from blood cancers to solid tumors. With decades of experience providing therapies for cancer patients, Amgen continues to grow its portfolio of innovative and biosimilar oncology medicines.


Media Contact for CURE Media Group
Theresa Burek, 609-325-4811

Release Summary

The Multiple Myeloma Research Foundation and Partners Announce a Hike Through Grand Canyon National Park To Raise Funds For Cancer Research


Media Contact for CURE Media Group
Theresa Burek, 609-325-4811