HACKENSACK- The John Theurer Cancer Center at Hackensack Meridian Health Hackensack University Medical Center will host its 11th annual Celebrating Life and Liberty at MetLife Stadium on Fri., Sept. 13 at 4:30 p.m.

The event celebrates survivorship and generates inspiration and support to those in the cancer community who are still in treatment or recovery. 5,000 patients, survivors and their families will join the health care team in an evening of fun and entertainment sponsored by John Theurer Cancer Center. 

Honoring and celebrating patients with cancer, Andre Goy, M.D., M.S., chair and executive director, Lymphoma Division chief, John Theurer Cancer Center created Celebrating Life and Liberty, a day that gives patients and families an opportunity to come together and celebrate their journeys.

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The idea for the program started came while Goy, a native of France, was treating a patient who worked as a curator at the Statue of Liberty, a gift to the United States from France. 

The idea of liberty resonated, because of his belief that patients should be liberated from cancer. Having heard the rich history of Ellis Island, and its symbolic importance of rebirth to millions of new Americans, Goy convinced the National Park Service to contribute the park for the event. The first Celebrating Life and Liberty event was held on Ellis Island in 2009 and approximately 700 people attended; the crowds have continued to grow in force, diversity and determination to 5,000 people. 

The event features a wide-range of activities for adults and children including musical performances by The New Yok BeeGees Tribute Band and the New Jersey Symphony Orchestra Chamber Players as well as interactive workshops, arts and crafts, face painters, caricaturists, magicians, lawn games, interactive workshops and dinner. Cancer advocacy organizations will provide information about their services for all aspects of cancer care, support and survivorship.