October 2, 2016, New Orleans, LA -An army of high school students were among the 800 people who showed up in full force at the 2016 Kelsey Bradley Favrot Memorial 5K. Friends and family of Ashley Code, a beloved 18-year-old high school senior who died of brain cancer just a month ago, paid tribute as “Ashley’s Army.”
Dr. Frank Culicchia, chairman of LSU Department of Neurosurgery in New Orleans, welcomed the group led by Ashley’s parents, Michael and Cassie Code and their children Jonathan, Katie and Andrew. A moment of silence preceded the national anthem sung by Brogan Hausknecht.
“Our 5K grew significantly this year as more people become aware of our efforts to raise the level of neuro-oncology care in New Orleans. This support is vital as we work toward a Brain Tumor Center in New Orleans,” Dr. Culicchia said. The recent hiring of Neuro-oncologist Aaron Mammoser is a major step toward realizing the vision of Kelsey Favrot, who hoped that one day New Orleans could offer the latest Neuro-Oncology care so patients would not have to leave town for treatment.
“As with any cancer, those diagnosed with brain cancer require multidisciplinary, specialized care,” explained Dr. Aaron Mammoser, M.D. “As with any cancer, those diagnosed with brain cancer require multidisciplinary, specialized care,” explained Dr. Mammoser. “A neurosurgeon, radiation oncologist, and neuro-oncologist make up the basis of this team, and work together with other disciplines such as psychology, physical medicine and rehabilitation, occupational, physical, and speech therapy to put together a comprehensive treatment plan that not only treats a person’s cancer, but maximizes their physical and emotional well being, as well.” Dr. Mammoser added that the stress of out of town travel can exacerbate the physical manifestations of the disease and is a burden to patients and their support system.
Dr. Mammoser is the Kelsey Bradley Favrot Chair in Neuro-Oncology at LSU Health New Orleans School of Medicine’s Department of Neurosurgery and will start seeing patients this week.