“Life is dangerous”

So begins Letters for Lizzie, a gripping and true story of one couple’s fight to survive and do right against overwhelming odds.  (Read the book’s introduction.)

Lizzie, with Jim, Feb. 1996, having been sent home from the hospital "to get her affairs in order."

Jim and Lizzie O’Donnell seemed to have everything.  They had a beautiful home in the Boston suburbs.  Jim was very successful in the financial services business. They had a summer home, with a 70-mile view, in the mountains of upstate New York.  They had three sons they loved deeply, and who they could afford to send to the finest of private schools.  But with all life had given them, they yearned only  more to help others in our broken and needy world.  So they gave up the money, the lovely homes, the friends and family who lived nearby, and moved to a little town in Indiana.  There, they hoped merely to serve others well.   They knew money would be tight, and life would be unfamiliar and different.  But they were ready.  Their desire seemed so noble, so worthy.  In fact, they felt God had asked them to go.  So, they went.  And within three months Lizzie was diagnosed with terminal cancer.  

Letters for Lizzie was one of several cancer survivors’ stories reported on in The Wall Street Journal in 2004. Those stories won the Pulitzer Prize for Amy Dockser Marcus in April, 2005.

Letters for Lizzie is their story of love, friendship and a battle for life.

Walking with Arthur is Jim’s story of learning to love Lizzie more than himself.

Read more of the story

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