Imerman Angels provides free personalized one-on-one cancer support for cancer fighters, survivors, and their caregivers worldwide. It began in Michigan when Jonny Imerman was diagnosed with testicular cancer and didn’t have anyone his age to talk to about what he was going through. He saw a need for cancer fighters to be able to talk to survivors about the path that they were about to embark on. Half the battle with cancer is attitude, support, love and understanding. Imerman Angels focuses on pairing fighters with survivors of similar cancers, staging, age and gender. They will also pair caregivers in need of someone to talk to.
At 1st Advantage Mortgage, Noelle Freeland began volunteering with Imerman Angels when her father was diagnosed with Non-Hodgkin’s Lymphoma about 9 years ago. It allowed her to feel like she was part of his treatment even though she was in Chicago and he was going through chemotherapy and radiation in Louisiana. Two years after her father was diagnosed, and with no symptoms or family history of breast or ovarian cancer, Noelle was diagnosed with ovarian cancer.
This is when she began her own personal journey with Imerman Angels and Jonny Imerman. Not only was she already involved as a volunteer helping with charity events and fundraisers around Chicago, but more importantly she knew other survivors that were her age. She thought to herself, “If they could do this, I could do this!”
Noelle has a very special place in her heart for Jonny Imerman and Imerman Angels. Due to her volunteering and friendship with Jonny, there was not a single treatment, surgery or doctor’s appointment that her friend did not attend with her. For a horrible situation, she says, “I’ve never felt more loved or cared for by friends, family and my Imerman Angels family.”
During the last few years, Noelle worked remotely out of Louisiana, so her volunteering consisted of guest bartending events at restaurants with local oncologists and fellow survivors. They are fun, well attended events. They sell t-shirts, hand out information about Imerman Angels, have signups for their newsletter and most importantly, they get the word out that there are survivors out there for people diagnosed with cancer. “We want people to know that someone else has walked their path and they don’t have to be alone,” says Noelle.