Drivers help patients on Road to Recovery

John Lauer, 66, understands what it’s like for patients who fight cancer.
Jessica Cuffman
Sep 3, 2013
Just to get to appointments for treatment, it takes time and energy.

The Fremont resident, now retired, made seemingly countless trips, driving his wife to the Cleveland Clinic 15 years ago for bone marrow transplants and stem cell treatments when she was fighting the disease.

That’s why he’s a volunteer for the American Cancer Society’s newly implemented program called Road to Recovery, which connects cancer patients with a free ride and volunteer drivers for treatment and doctor’s appointments.

“I’m active in the cancer society. I lost a brother, my wife is a cancer survivor. I’ve been in charge of Relay for Life a couple of times,” Lauer said.

Sandusky and Seneca counties recently launched the program, already available in many other Ohio counties, said Deborah Niese, health initiatives representative for ACS.

“The best treatment in the world is useless if you can’t get there,” she said.  

About 25 drivers have already volunteered to help with the program.

Lauer said once they verify your insurance, license and background, it just takes a few hours to get ready to be a volunteer. A volunteer coordinator arranges the rides as they receive requests for transport.

Lauer is set to give his first ride next week from Bellevue to Columbus.

“It’s a good cause, and cancer affects about every family, if not every family,” Lauer said.