- Dr. Mike Glode"Doc"
University of Colorado Cancer Center
I became involved because I have taken care of many cancer patients and found the idea of the EPIC Experience a way to give back for all they have taught me over the years. As a cancer survivor myself, I hope to be able to empathize and empower participants in our camps.
- Hazel Senz“Hazel Nutt”
Epic Experience Cancer Thriver
I have been a pediatric nurse for over 30 years. Most of my experience was at The Children’s Hospital on a general medical/surgical unit and coordinating pediatric clinical trials, but I did dabble in biotech and adult oncology clinical trials for the last few years.
On March 5, 2014, my life changed forever; I was diagnosed with Stage IV lung cancer. Being a non-smoker all my life, this came at quite a shock. I sought care for my cancer at the Anschutz Cancer Center at University of Colorado Hospital. I was introduced to Epic Experience through the social worker and the rest is history.
I became an Epic camper in June 2014. The experience was life changing and it will forever remind me that there is, indeed, life after you have been told, “You have cancer”. Epic allowed me to push past those scary limits I set for myself and let me have fun doing it. On the days when I begin to feel sorry for myself, I think of all the brave cancer fighters and survivors from camp who are either walking a much more challenging journey than I can ever imagine or have walked the walk before me and have come out the other side stronger and more hopeful than ever.
Although I have Stage IV lung cancer, my treatment has allowed me to continue doing the things in my life I truly enjoy like running, skiing, hiking and being with my friends and family. Because of today’s cutting edge research and current treatment options, I plan on being around for a long time!
Everyone is so busy with life, but when the majority of the Epic Experience camp volunteers are previous campers themselves, it says a lot about the program. The urge to “pay it forward” is strong and this is why I want to volunteer my time and experience for such a great organization
- Betsy Cabrera"Twig"
RN, BSN, OCN
I have been an oncology nurse for my whole nursing career-23 years and counting! I received my nursing degree from the University of Missouri-Columbia. I have worked at TMCA for my entire career, starting as a floor nurse and then a charge nurse for the past 10 years and have recently switched roles as a Nurse Navigator for our facility. I knew I wanted to be an Oncology Nurse since college, when my grandmother was diagnosed with Breast cancer and came to live with my parents who resided in the same town I was attending college. I have lived in several states prior to returning to Colorado in 1992. I am married with 2 kids and 2 dogs (I would have more if my husband would allow, dogs that is). I enjoy hiking, biking, running 5Ks, Mud Runs and a variety of arts and crafts. My moto, is “Life is an Adventure…ENJOY the ride”
- Emily Piper"Bear"
RN, BSN, OCN
Calloway Young Cancer Center
I’ve been an Oncology nurse for 8 years. I work at the Calaway Young Cancer Center in Glenwood Springs, Colorado. I’m passionate about helping my oncology patients. I joined The EPIC Experience family because I wanted to continue to give back. I’ve spent much of my nursing career focused on oncology treatment. I’ve come to learn the Survivorship is where the continued healing happens!
Since moving to CO in 2010, the mountains of Colorado have been my playground. I love trail running, rafting, and my Berner pup Finnley.
- Laura Woodward"LaLa"
University of Colorado Health RN, BSN, OCN
I grew up in Vicksburg, MS, with a two year stint in South Korea courtesy of being an army brat. I went straight to nursing school after high school and started my nursing career in Rochester, MN. After a winter or two in the great cold, my love of travel and my love for my work combined and I started travel nursing. I was able to see the country and meet wonderful people from coast to coast. I decided to grow some roots and make my home in Denver in 2012.
I love the mountains, the sunny winters, and good times spent with friends and family. I am a nurse at University of Colorado Health in the Blood Disorders Clinic, working with blood cancer and bone marrow transplant patients. I love working with our patients, and when I was lucky enough to volunteer as a medic for camp I was hooked! Such a fantastic experience and a renewal of energy as much for me as for the campers! I’m so excited to be a part of this wonderful group of special people!
- Kathy Savatini"Snacks"
Greetings! I was introduced to the Epic Experience family after being diagnosed with ovarian cancer in January 2017. After undergoing surgery and completing 3 months of chemotherapy, I applied to attend an Epic Experience camp which I attended July 2018.
My medical career spans 40 years, with the first 18 years as a Registered Nurse and the last 22 years as a Physician Assistant. Over those years, I have worked in a variety of different specialties including family medicine, oncology, surgery, gastroenterology and sleep medicine.
My hobbies include hiking, fishing, skate skiing, bicycling, gardening and community volunteering.
- Lauren Lanzotti"Manicotti"
Epic Experience came into my life while working as an inpatient nurse on the Oncology and Bone Marrow Transplant Units at University of Colorado Hospital. I was instantly drawn to the idea of community and positive change for cancer survivors.
I spend my days learning from my patients and trying to provide them with the best care possible. However, that care needs to continue outside of treatment. Epic Experience has shown me the beauty of life lived to the fullest regardless of health issues. It has also spoken to the impact of commonality and understanding of one another. Volunteering at camp is life altering and I hope to bring it's significance into every room I walk into for the rest of my career.
When not at camp or work, I spend most of my time outdoors. I love a good butt-kicking hike, skiing fresh powder and drinking delicious craft beer. I will be setting out to do travel nursing and am excited to see where this crazy whirlwind called life takes me. But I know I always have a home with Epic.