Nina Volpe

Antonina “Nina” Volpe is a northeast Ohio native and the mother of two beautiful daughters. She is also a resilient and hopeful cancer fighter. Eight years ago, at 31 years old, Nina had a seizure in the middle of the night. After an MRI and further testing, Nina learned she had a cancerous tumor on the left side of her brain.

Nina came to Aultman for treatment and due to her type of cancer, was also connected to specialists at Duke University Hospital in North Carolina. Her eight-year cancer journey has been full of twists and turns and a year ago, Nina’s Aultman doctors explained that the tumor was growing faster than before.

In fall 2021, due to her treatments and health, Nina was unable to work. Having spent years in the restaurant and service industry, she didn’t have the stamina to maintain her job while managing her cancer diagnosis. Government assistance was hard to come by, and she was facing a tough time providing for herself and her 11-year-old daughter.

During the holidays, Aultman’s cancer team contacted Nina, asking if they could support her family through the CancerCare Fund. Aultman’s CancerCare Fund assists patients with expenses such as transportation, groceries, prescriptions, utilities and medical supplies, costs that can quickly add up during cancer treatment. The fund is made possible by donations from generous supporters and every penny goes directly to patients.

Through the CancerCare Fund, Nina received gas gift cards and utility assistance. The timing was perfect; it helped Nina with her expenses so she could continue her cancer treatments and be there for her preteen daughter. When Nina thinks about her care team and the additional help provided through the CancerCare Fund, she is overwhelmed with thankfulness.

Nina shares, “Through it all, I’m grateful. I’m grateful for every day, for the help, for the caring love and support through the whole process. For the Aultman team to care and show empathy reminds me I will be okay.”

Today, Nina’s condition is stable. She continues chemotherapy once a month and takes chemo medication. Her oldest daughter lives in Texas now, and she enjoys the time they spend together. Nina’s younger daughter keeps her busy, and the pair love trips to the movie theater and going on walks. Nina is starting a new job as a pharmacy technician, and she is grateful for the opportunity to work again in a new field.

As she reflects on her eight-year cancer journey, Nina thanks her family for their ongoing support. She also shares she couldn’t do it without her Aultman team. “The radiation department, they feel like family. They walked with me every step of the way and showed me a lot of love,” she said. “Coming to Aultman is like entering a place that feels angelic. I can feel the support and good vibes of those around me.”

Click here to support the CancerCare Fund, the important resource that helped Nina and her family.