LeAnn Schroeder Hardiek was the 30-year old mother of two young boys when she was first diagnosed with breast cancer. She passed away in April 2015 at the age of 31. Upon LeAnn’s first diagnosis with breast cancer, the Effingham community rallied their support around her and her two young sons. The boys were often given toys, such as Lego sets, to keep them occupied during LeAnn’s hospital stays. The generosity towards her sons inspired LeAnn to give back to her community in the same way.
Upon a request to her family, a fund was established to provide children of cancer patients with the same comfort her sons received during her cancer battles. LeAnn’s father Jim and stepmother Kathy honored her request by establishing the LeAnn Schroeder Hardiek Friendship Fund with Effingham County Community Foundation.
The LeAnn Schroeder Hardiek Friendship Fund will provide cancer patients with gift cards for their young children (age 18 and under). These children are often scared of hospitals and worried about their sick parents. Many times, birthday and holiday gifts, dining out and entertainment becomes a luxury that parents cannot afford due to the expense of cancer treatments. These gift cards are meant to help alleviate the child’s fear and relieve some of the financial burden felt by parents. The gift cards can be used for toys, meals and other forms of entertainment that can provide a distraction for the child whose parent is battling cancer. The gift cards will be distributed by the staff at the Effingham Crossroads Cancer Center.
LeAnn graduated from Effingham High School in 2001 and received her Associates degree in English from Lakeland College. She was athletic and enjoyed playing sports, especially volleyball. LeAnn was a member of Effingham YB Next, a supporter of Relay for Life – Effingham County and was a founder of Effingham “Bras for A Cause.”
Donations may be made to the LeAnn Schroeder Hardiek Fund by sending checks to Effingham County Community Foundation, PO Box 1211, Effingham, IL 62401 (include LeAnn Schroeder Hardiek Friendship Fund in the memo) or online at www.enrichingourcommunity.org/LeAnnSchroederHardiek. The Community Foundation is a 501(c)(3) tax-exempt non-profit organization. All gifts are tax-deductible to the extent of the law.