1 Few parents are likely to be as grateful as those whose children have survived serious illness. Sara Flash is one of those survivors — of non-Hodgkin lymphoma — much to the relief of her parents, Ed and Rabbi Allison Flash, her brothers, Adam and Daniel, and family and friends.
On September 25, Sara was an honored patient at Seattle’s Light the Night walk around Green Lake.
The walk is an annual Leukemia & Lymphoma Society event paying tribute and bringing hope to people battling cancer. (Details at www.lightthenight.org.)
I spoke to Sara and her mom a few days before the event.
“We have 35 now,” Allison reported on their team size, but ultimately ended up with 60. “We know everyone on the team…it’s a slice of our life,” including walkers from her kids’ schools, members of Temple Beth Am where Allison works, and of course family and friends.
Sara carried a white, lighted balloon on the 2.8-mile stroll to signify her survivor status, while others carried red balloons to indicate support.
Sara was diagnosed last October and began an intensive chemotherapy regimen. In January of this year she was in remission.
“She is back in school full time,” reports Mom, and both went to camp and “celebrated her Bat Mitzvah this summer.”
Jeff Berkman is another patient who walked with his family and friends. Diagnosed with acute myelogenous leukemia just before Sara got her diagnosis, Jeff, the former longtime board treasurer of the JTNews, is in remission after a stem cell transplant in February.
It happens that the families are friends.
“We’ve known Jeff for a long time,” says Allison, and Sara is good friends with Jeff and Lisa Berkman’s daughter Sabrina. They were all in frequent touch during both families’ ordeals.
The walk is over, but you can still support cancer research by going to the Web page and making a donation.
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Sari Crevin is living the great American business success story right now. About five years ago, when her oldest was 1 and learning to drink from a sippy cup, the mother of two had a great idea.
“In the beginning Jake was just having a hard time holding it,” and would drop the cup, Sari says. Then he realized the fun of throwing it from the high chair or the stroller “to see how many times Mom will pick it up.”
Tiring of this game, and unable to find an existing product that tethered cups to seats, Sari thought, “maybe I could do this.”
Buying a cheap sewing machine, which she didn’t even know how to use, she made some tethers which she gave to friends. It “snowballed” from there.
At the time she was an independent recruiter and business coach in the Bay Area, but in 2006 Microsoft called and offered her a job. She and her husband Matt moved to Bellevue. They also have a second son, Charlie.
BooginHead — a family word for something silly — was relegated to a hobby while the family got settled, but then Oprah and QVC announced a best-business-ideas contest on the Oprah show. Sari didn’t make the cut, but QVC producers were delighted with her idea. She was inspired to move ahead.
It probably helps that Sari comes from an entrepreneurial family. Her father has his own consulting business and when Sari was a teen her mother opened up a small book store, which quickly expanded. “My mother worked seven days a week,” remembers Sari. “Her business put me through college.”
Sari herself worked full time while building her business. Her break came when Target took an interest, selecting “Sippi Grips” for their showcase of parent-invented products. National exposure has pushed BooginHead to surpass $1 million in sales this year.
Sari says she’s fortunate that Microsoft allows her to juggle both her work responsibilities and that Matt, the press box announcer for the San Francisco 49ers, is able to be home with the kids most of the time. (Sidebar: Matt’s dad, Larry, grew up in Seattle and attended Garfield High School.)
The family is very happy here in “Bay Area Number Two,” and with their congregation, Temple De Hirsch Sinai in Bellevue. “Thankfully, it’s right down the street.”
Sari and Matt both relax by working out regularly and Sari is a self-confessed “TV junkie.”
And Matt has started a business, too, Voice of the Box, producing instructional videos for schools that have sports management training programs.
Both businesses are on the web, of course, at www.booginhead.com and www.voiceofthebox.com.