Dr. Marnie Rose was just 27 and in the first year of her pediatric medical residency at Children's Memorial Hermann Hospital when she was diagnosed with a rare form of brain cancer. Despite her diagnosis, she agreed to share all - her cancer journey, personal life and professional duties as a medical resident - with a TV crew from the ABC reality series Houston Medical. The critically acclaimed hospital series followed the lives of doctors, nurses, other health care professionals and patients at Memorial Hermann. Houston Medical aired nationally on the ABC Network for six weeks of summer, 2002.
In the show's debut episode, Marnie stunned viewers by pulling off her wig, revealing that she was both a doctor and a patient. Throughout the run of Houston Medical, viewers were awed by her determination to keep working despite her illness, her candor about her disease, and her positive attitude in the face of adversity.
"We wanted to honor Marnie's spirit, courage and strength with an event that would benefit two causes that touched her life so personally - brain cancer and children," says Myles Rose, Marnie's twin. "My sister chose to fight cancer with the nation watching. In doing so, she both put a "face" to brain cancer and offered strength and optimism to many who were ill. "Through our annual fundraiser, Run for the Rose, we hope to continue Marnie's legacy."
Marnie died on August 23, 2002, from complications of her cancer, just five weeks after the show's final episode aired.
All 13 years of Run for the Rose have been immensely successful:
$90,000 in 2003 $430,000 in 2010
$100,000 in 2004 $455,000 in 2011
$110,000 in 2005 $500,000 in 2012
$223,000 in 2006 $515,000 in 2013
$320,000 in 2007 $600,000 in 2014
$400,000 in 2008 $610,000 in 2015
$425,000 in 2009
The first Run for the Rose in 2003 included one or two brain tumor survivors. The 2016 Run for the Rose had more than 5,500 participants, including 100 survivors, and netted more than $600,000.00. The unwavering support of our donors since 2003 has enabled us to give more than $5 million to brain cancer research at The University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center, pediatric health initiatives at Children's Memorial Hermann Hospital, and cutting-edge research and treatment for children with brain tumors at McGovern Medical School (formerly UTHealth Medical School). These donations truly are a gift of life.
Recently, the Dr. Marnie Rose Foundation added opportunities for brain tumor patients and their families to join together for mutual support and the exchange of information. We always are eager to enhance the lives of our brain tumor patients and welcome your input.
An idea that was born out of love for a daughter lost to an insidious disease has now taken on a life of its own. The compelling story of this young woman, Dr. Marnie Rose, has inspired those who knew her and loved her and those who have come to love her and know her through the foundation established in her name.