A Documentary Tribute to Lauren’s Cause

ndg sand coverSince around September of 2017, we have been working on a labor of love to continue Lauren’s cause of raising awareness for childhood cancer.  Lauren had been on the Capital Public Radio show “Insight” with Beth Ruyak for two shows before she passed away.  Mom was interviewed for the show by Beth after Lauren passed away.  At that time, Beth asked if we would agree to a documentary about Lauren and her cause.  Of course, we agreed!  It was exactly what Lauren would have wanted.  The time wasn’t right to start the project until just over a year ago.

It’s been very difficult to go through the details of Lauren’s initial cancer diagnosis and her struggles throughout her treatments, but those were mixed with heartwarming details of how Lauren touched others and how others touched her.  It also brought to the forefront the depth of our loss, missing Lauren every day that passes.  However, this was a project that would have made Lauren so proud!  She wanted to raise awareness of childhood cancer, not for her own benefit, but for the children who were yet to be diagnosed.  We’re hoping this will help in some way to raise awareness, which can lead to increased funding for research to find better treatments and cures for children across the US and the world.

The documentary, titled “The Not-Dying Girl”, will be premiered on Thursday, January 31, 2019, at the Crest Theater in Sacramento.  The doors open at 5:00pm and the show will start at 6:00pm.  The event is free, but you need to reserve your tickets through Eventbrite.  Below is the link:


There is a trailer preview of the documentary on Beth’s website:


When you click the link you’ll see Lauren’s smiling face.  Scroll below to “Featured Project” and click on “About the film” and it will take you to where you can watch the trailer, link to this blog, and also see behind the scenes photos from filming the show.  The show also airs on KVIE 6 on February 6 (7pm), February 8 (4:30pm) and February 10 (6:30pm).

We’re all so thankful that Beth Ruyak felt a special connection to Lauren and wanted to spread her message to others.  She took the utmost care in writing the outline and editing to tell her story the way I believe Lauren would have wanted it.  The documentary is by Ruyak Media with Dos Eckes Productions and was co-written and co-produced by Beth Ruyak, Jim Eckes, and Suzanne Eckes-Wahl.

Beth interviewed Dr. Wayne Jolly, Lauren’s oncologist, who took such amazing care of her through both of her battles.  She also interviewed Mom Deanne, Dad John, and Brother Mark.  Of course, Egor, Lauren’s “husband”, and DeAngela, Lauren’s bestie, were also interviewed.  The story centers around Lauren’s fight, but also on her amazing bucket list wedding.  DeAngela is the person who asked Egor to marry Lauren, and away we went, planning a wedding in just three weeks!

We know Lauren would be proud of this project.  The final interviews were done in Hawaii, where Egor was stationed with the Navy.  The interviews took place on July 6, 2018, exactly five years after the dream bucket list wedding.  Lauren gave us a sign of her approval by creating a rainbow in the sky the minute the last interview was complete.  It was truly beautiful. beach rainbow

We hope people are able to come to the Crest Theater to share in the experience.  There are also the three air dates on KVIE for those who can’t attend, or those who just want to watch it again.  We thank everyone who made this happen and all those who read her blog and kept her motivated to keep writing.  Lauren lives on through her blog and all of us.


10 thoughts on “A Documentary Tribute to Lauren’s Cause

  1. I am so sorry I cannot make it, as I have a school board meeting to attend.

    Lauren was, and always will be, a shining light in my life. As a swimmer and a parent, I could connect with her, and I constantly hoped and prayed for her good health. She was always so positive!

    My life is better for knowing her, if only through her blog.

    Dan Snyder

  2. I followed Lauren’s blog and fight. Wish I could see the documentary but I live on the east coast.. will this be posted online for everyone to watch?

  3. Love this. Thank you.

    I was Lauren’s classmate at DVC for 2 classes. We often walked together between the classes & I was struck by how special she was.

    I just heard about another young woman with potentially the same cancer.

    Janice Litvin Wellness Coach & Speaker www. JaniceLitvin.com 415.518.2202


  4. Thank you for your comment. I’m always amazed at the number of people who were touched by Lauren. Of course as a parent, I have always thought she was special. It’s so heartwarming to hear from others who felt so too.

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