2019 Walk to Cure Arthritis Honorees

Maleewan Kitcharoensakkul, MD
St. Louis Children's Hospital
Medical Honoree

Dr. Kitcharoensakkul or Dr. "Malee" received her medical degree from Mahidol University, Thailand. She completed her pediatric residency and fellowships in allergy, immunology, and pediatric rheumatology at St. Louis Children’s Hospital, Washington University School of Medicine. She is a member of the American College of Rheumatology (ACR) and an Assistant Professor of Pediatrics at Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis. Dr. Malee sees pediatric patients with various rheumatologic, immunologic, and allergic conditions at St. Louis Children's Hospital. She loves her job. It allows her to treat children with chronic diseases and help improve the quality of life for them and their families. She is grateful for the opportunity to raise awareness of chronic arthritis in children and adults in our community through the Walk to Cure Arthritis!

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Cathy Mayrose
Rheumatoid Arthritis
Adult Honoree

Cathy is a wife, mother and devoted grandma to five amazing grandkids. Prior to her retirement in 2013, she was an elementary school teacher for 40 years. She was always on the go and poured her energy into her family and community. Two years ago, Cathy developed a stiff neck. ibuprofen, cortisone shots and physical therapy didn’t help. The joints in her hands started to swell. Thinking she was on the same path as her mother, who had suffered from osteoarthritis, Cathy visited her doctor and was dianosed with rheumatoid arthritis.

Through trial and error, Cathy found which medications worked and didn’t work. But the greatest challenge for Cathy has been figuring out how to support herself emotionally amongst chronic illness. No one in her family or immediate circle has RA, making her feel isolated. Then there’s the fatigue, pain, and “sick and tired of being sick and tired”. Most of all, there’s a sense of loss – of health, energy, and the ability to participate fully in the lives of her loved ones.

Discovering the Arthritis Foundation was a turning point. Cathy joined their support group and through sharing experiences and advice, she has not only gained perspective on the health challenges that others face but is inspired by the grace and strength of those who refuse to let RA define their lives.

These days, Cathy has achieved some stability. She finds it helpful to persevere in staying active, even when she doesn’t feel like it. She is (mostly) able to keep up with her grandkids and volunteers several days a week at her granddaughters’ elementary school. By caring for herself, Cathy can continue giving to others, and she is grateful to be able to support the arthritis community that has given HER so much support on her RA journey! 

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Abby Rosenberger
Juvenile Idiopathic Arthritis
Youth Honoree

Abby had started walking at 14-months and was never too sure on her feet. When she was 18 months old, she stopped walking and showed pain in her knees. She spent most of her time sitting and playing on the floor but would not move. After seeing several doctors, she was diagnosed with juvenile idiopathic arthritis, at 19 months old. She had to receive steroid injections, but within 3 days after the injections she was walking again. Since then she has had swelling in her feet, ankles, fingers, wrists and right elbow. After being on Enbrel for 2 years, she was taken off because she was showing no signs of inflammation. After a year of being on just methotrexate, she was taken off that as well, but within 1 month of being off, she had a flair in her knees and elbow. She had both joints injected and was immediately put back on methotrexate. She is currently doing well, but she has her off days. Her family hopes there will one day be a cure for arthritis so other children will not have to endure what Abby has.

To join the fight against arthritis, register or donate today!