Patients & Caregivers
- "Inspired by Patients"
- David Schenkein, M.D., Chief Executive Officer
Our Commitment to Patients
Each day, we climb a stairway at Agios that features portraits of our loved ones affected by cancer. We are reminded that cancer and rare genetic disorders are more than just diseases of the body – they disrupt the lives of individuals and impact entire families. These patient stories reinforce the importance of the work we do, the urgent need for new therapies, and the necessity that our medicines meet the highest of standards.
What Drives Us
The many friends and family of Agios employees affected by cancer are what motivates, inspires and drives us.
Everett Thomas Cavan
Everett Thomas Cavan was the first child born to parents Jim and Deana on April 27, 2014. As this little boy with huge celestial blue eyes grew they wondered what life would have in store for him—he seemed remarkable in some way. Certainly all parents feel that way about each of their children, but little Rett knew something his parents didn’t—his life on this earth would be short and powerful. Rett’s cancer revealed itself as a malignant rhabdoid tumor in his liver at 6 months. It quickly spread to his lungs and after many moments of hope and then despair, his team at Boston Children’s Hospital recommended hospice care at home. That’s where he passed, alone in his parents’ embrace during a beautiful sunset on February 22, 2015. The greatest fear of a bereaved parent is that their child will be forgotten. So Rett’s parents have chosen to keep the spark that was their son lit through a vibrant organization for cancer families called Rett’s Roost: www.rettsroost.org
Growing up, I had a very close relationship with my maternal grandmother, Jewell – a kind, gentle-natured and extremely loving woman. Each summer, I spent a week or two at her house in southern Georgia and these times remain some of the most treasured memories of my childhood. Jewell was diagnosed with lymphoma which she courageously battled for two years but ultimately passed away from her disease when I was 13 years old. My heart was broken and while I was still quite young at the time, I vowed to pursue a career involving cancer research to further understand and find better therapies for the disease that took my grandmother.