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Keaton Raphael Memorial

Apr 30, 2009 05:00PM ● By Super Admin

It has been 11 years since five-year-old Keaton Raphael lost his young life to an aggressive form of childhood cancer known as neuroblastoma – cancer of the nervous system. Since that time, Keaton’s mother, Robyn Raphael, has kept up her son’s fight against cancer by establishing the Roseville-based Keaton Raphael Memorial (KRM), a non-profit organization that helps local cancer patients and their families – 425 thus far – face the same heartbreaking trials with a number of critical programs, services and grants.

“KRM is unique in that it remains the only childhood cancer organization in northern California that financially assists families whose children are battling cancer with significant and critical funding,” Raphael says. “Our Family Assistance Program provides practical resources that help empower them in their journeys.” KRM also offers volunteer outreach, needs assessments, customized care packages with therapeutic components, access to local and national resources and, if needed, bereavement services.

A key factor that separates KRM from other like-minded organizations is fundraising and advocacy for childhood cancer research – the latter at a national level. “KRM has raised more than $1 million for local and national childhood cancer research projects,” says Raphael, whose tireless lobbying alongside parents of children with cancer resulted in the first-ever landmark legislative childhood cancer research bill signed into law in 2008 by President George W. Bush. Locally, KRM continues to aid cancer patients and their families throughout Sacramento County and beyond, due in part to great fundraising events such as the recent St. Baldrick's fundraiser where volunteers “shave their heads in solidarity of children with cancer, while requesting donations of support from friends and family.” As such, a great many residents from the area are passionately involved with the cause.

Because of KRM’s tireless efforts and remarkable results, Hope Productions Foundation selected the nonprofit as one of six charities that will benefit from its Walk ‘N Rock For Kids – a 5K walk scheduled for May 23, 2009, at Raley Field in West Sacramento. The inaugural event will begin at 8 a.m. and participants will walk on behalf of one of the event’s designated charities, all of which will host a fun, interactive booth. Walk ‘N Rock will conclude with an evening concert featuring the legendary rock band Journey.  Tickets to the concert are purchasable by the public, or free to those walkers with a certain number of pledges.

“KRM is hosting a walk team and we would love to have as many community members as possible walk on our charity’s behalf,” says Raphael, who adds that 100 percent of proceeds raised from Walk ‘N Rock will directly benefit KRM’s Family Assistance Program.

So what’s next for this groundbreaking organization? “KRM understands that families need help during their journey until there is a cure,” Raphael explains. “We are currently working to expand our Family Assistance Program, and finding better ways to serve our families. I’m inspired to do more because of parents who, every single day, struggle to keep their families together while fighting for their children’s lives. They don’t have to fight alone. KRM is here to help them.”
For more information about KRM, visit For more information about Walk ‘N Rock for Kids, visit or call 866-559-2341. For more information on St. Baldrick's Foundation, visit