RIO RANCHO — Neither of her teenage sons that attend Cleveland High School plays football for the Storm, but it just felt right when Kelly Grimando heard that a CHS junior and three-sport student-athlete had been stricken with cancer, to jump into it guns a-blazing.
“I’m an RN; I work in the hospital settings, so I see what cancer patients and their families go through,” Grimando said. She went to an early Storm football game this season and “saw the banner, and it piqued my interest.”
“She came up with a good idea for this kid and the family,” husband Joe Grimando said.
“It just stuck with me,” Kelly Grimando said, before she took action. “It was heavy on my heart. … I was seeing some (social media) posts and just couldn’t imagine what the family was going through. … I don’t know them; I don’t know Marshall, I don’t know the Logans.”
As for her Etsy online presence, she said, it originated “just to occupy my time — something that was mine. I was in retail for 25 years, so I have a background in business and business management and was looking for something less serious than being an RN, and something that was mine and allow me a creative outlet.”
One of her Etsy “storefronts” consists of items related to Marshall’s fight against cancer to raise money for the family. The Grimandos also contributed to the family’s meal train.
“It’s a way I could fight, get the family’s story out there, get Marshall’s fight out there, support him visually with merchandise people could be wearing and showing their support.”
She has 15 such items, she said, found at the Gifted Sip.
“Rather than have people go to the Gifted Sip, I created a special link for Marshall: It’s called Marshall Logan Store … within my store,” she said. “And I’ve created a QR code.” As of Oct. 6, she said, checking her “store” from her cellphone, “There’s about 75 items that have been purchased, and it’s only been (open) eight days. … I’m just excited to be able to help and do something.”
She’s also planning to get posters printed and displayed around the city.
She’s a nurse, and she knows a lot about the medical world. And she knows community support, evident in the past and certainly today in the City of Vision, doesn’t happen by itself.
Added Stacy Salinas, the school’s activities director, “Since the day we opened our doors in 2009, Cleveland High School has been about family. We truly believe in the Storm Family, and no one goes through anything alone. One of our own is hurting, and we need to rally around them and help in any way we can. That is what a community is.”
“I think it does (exist), but not everywhere,” Kelly Grimando said. “We’ve really seen it since the boys got into high school.”
The Grimandos’ sons are on opposite ends of Marshall’s class: Christopher is a sophomore; Braeden is a senior.
“Along with Kelly’s fundraising, we are going to be releasing a shirt on (Oct. 9) that we will be selling through my student government. All proceeds will go to the Logan family,” Salinas said. “In addition to that, we will be doing a raffle of gift baskets from items that have been donated to us from local businesses. We are still working on getting everything together, but our hope is to have a home (football) playoff game and do a Marshall Logan Night for that game.”
Plus, when the CHS volleyball team gets a visit from city foe Rio Rancho this evening (Oct. 12), the Storm girls are hosting the annual “Dig Pink” match with the Rams, with a silent auction and donation boxes, with proceeds benefitting the Logan family for their son’s battle with cancer.
To contact Grimando, back in Denver this week as a travel nurse, email her at [email protected].
Vanessa Marshall provided the Observer with an update on her son’s condition Monday morning.
“Marshall had his first two-day inpatient chemotherapy (and) was able to attend church services at Sagebrush, and we caught the beginning songs touch his heart as he shed a few tears.
“Later that day, he did start to run a fever with ear pain that has landed him back at the hospital’s pediatric oncology department to receive antibiotics,” she wrote. “As long as his blood work shows he is maintaining his levels, he will check in this Friday for a 5-6 days’ chemotherapy cycle.
“Like anyone receiving chemotherapy, he is not excited, but he knows he has to push through to get to his surgery,” she added. “He is so brave and staying so positive.”