Helping communities heal in ways big and small

This latest installment of our #BuildingWhatMatters series sheds light on how construction projects can transform communities on a macro-level, but can also have a huge impact on individual lives. This is the story of how a Skanska healthcare project brought the concept of Building What Matters to life for Portland Project Manager Jerry Marmon and his family.

My Building What Matters story is about how Skanska built what mattered for my mother-in-law and how that project saved her life.

Over the 2012 Thanksgiving weekend, my mother-in-law felt ill and went to the doctor.  Her blood work came back irregular and after several additional tests she was diagnosed with Multiple Myeloma, or bone marrow cancer.  As part of her care, she underwent a very aggressive treatment that completely debilitated her immune system.  During this treatment she stayed in the Seattle Cancer Care Alliance House, which has rooms designed to reduce exposure to contaminates and germs for patients in need of isolation while their immune systems rebuild.   Since our Seattle team is closely tied with the local community, Skanska employees often volunteer at the SCAA house. During her stay, my mother-in-law appreciated a weekly event in which Skanska employees make and serve dinner to patients.  She saw and connected with our Seattle employees every week until she was able to go home, and she was amazed at this continuing service they provide.

After this first treatment, she was told she needed to undergo chemotherapy every other week for two years or until test results indicated her cancer was in remission. After spending months in Seattle, she was able to receive her chemotherapy treatments at her local hospital, Good Samaritan Hospital in Puyallup, Wash. Skanska recently expanded and renovated this hospital to a huge community welcome,  including my mother in-law who appreciated being able to receive her treatment in a state-of-the art facility.

MultiCare_Good Sam_Ext3

Skanska expanded and renovated Good Samaritan Hospital in Puyallup, Wash., where Jerry Marmon’s mother-in-law received life saving care for her cancer.

The shortest recovery for Multiple Myeloma is two years under this treatment and the best outcome is to knock it into remission, as no known full cure exists today.  Through the facilities built by Skanska, the use of cutting edge medical treatment, and her outstanding response to this care, we’re happy to say that my mother in-law is on her way to achieving remission. She completed her last chemotherapy treatment this November and is now on the road to getting her body back into shape and enjoying life.

My mother-in-law received a grant from the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society during all of these treatments. Cancer treatment is certainly not inexpensive.  This grant, along with the work Skanska and the medical community performed, was the only possible way that this treatment was made available.  In no short way can our family express our gratitude for these funds and facilities.

This is our story. We continue to thank all those that made it possible, with all our hearts. I am proud to be able to say I work for the company that provided one of those crucial pieces in her care.

Jerry Marmon

Jerry Marmon

Project manager

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