The Valerie Fund Run/Walk held at Verona Park on June 14, 2014

John Metaxas/WCBS 880

The Valerie Fund Helps Parents Whose Lives Have Been Turned Upside Down By Cancer

June 06, 2018 - 2:17 pm

VERONA PARK, N.J. (WCBS 880) -- The Valerie Fund is an organization dedicated to assisting children suffering from cancer and blood disorders, as well as the loved ones of these patients.

WCBS 880’s John Metaxas spoke to two fathers of cancer patients whose lives were turned upside down when their children were diagnosed.

“It was without question the worst news really any parent can face,” Lance Tong, father of 13-year-old Hodgkin’s Lymphoma patient Jared, said.

James Mering, whose 12-year-old daughter Abby suffers from cancer, told Metaxas about the unwavering assistance his daughter and family received from The Valerie Center.

“You don’t expect like a whole support staff like that to come swoop in but when it happens you’re really grateful for it,” Mering said.

The Valerie Fund provides several support outlets for patients and their families, including psychologists, financial counseling and educational contacts. Tong spoke to nutritionists and a school liaison to help his son through his healing.

“We met with dietitians who made sure that Jared would receive the proper nutrition during his treatment,” Tong explained.

In addition, social workers are available for siblings to discuss their thoughts and feelings during these difficult times.

Now, these families want to give back to the organization for all the assistance it has provided. They’re participating in this Saturday’s, June 9, annual Valerie Fund Walk and JAG Physical Therapy 5K Run in Verona Park to raise money to help the organization continue its mission.

“Quite frankly I think I’d be lost without the support that I got from the Valerie Fund,” Tong said.

The walk steps off at 9:30 a.m. For more information visit