SUNNY CARNEY
After a courageous 10 year fight battling Carcinoid Cancer, Sunny Carney, of Plum, passed peacefully on Saturday, November 3. She was married to her devoted husband, Mark; and was a loving mother to Austen, Logan and Nolan; daughter of Patricia Jennings and the late James J. Jennings; daughter-in-law of Dale and Dottie Carney; sister of Judy Phillips (Ray Jr.), Lynn Pesta (Teddy), Michael Jennings (Vicki Lynn), James Jennings (Sue), Joseph Jennings (Elizabeth), Sheila Fortes (Jim); sister-in-law of Craig Carney (Julia). She is also survived by numerous aunts, uncles, cousins, nieces, and nephews, and was a true friend and inspiration to many.
In addition to being an inspiration to family and friends Sunny inspired carcinoid cancer patients across the globe through her blog, and then her book "The Sunny Side of Cancer. She spoke at numerous cancer events locally sharing stories of her journey which led her from Basel, Switzerland to all of the top Carcinoid Cancer specialists here in the states. She was an advocate for better diagnosis of the disease and for insurance coverage of treatments. She fought with grace and dignity, never letting the pain inside challenge her faith or diminish her love for life.
Memorials may be made to "Carney Family Fund", c/o S&T Bank, 2190 Hulton Road, Verona, PA 15147.
Friends received Monday 7-9 p.m. and Tuesday 3-8 p.m. at Unity Community Church, 215 Unity Center Road, Plum, PA 15239.
Funeral Services will be held on Wednesday at 11 a.m. in Unity Community Church with Rev. Frank Deluce officiating. Arrangements entrusted to CHARLES W. TRENZ FUNERAL HOME, INC.
VIEW GUEST BOOK Published in Pittsburgh Post-Gazette


After over a decade of suffering from Carcinoid Cancer, Sunny Jennings Carney has decided to fight back. She has currently undergone two proven treatments in Basel, Switzerland and is planning to return for two more. She is also planning on going to Houston, Texas for a six month period to undergo experimental treatments that look promising but are not FDA approved. She has exhausted all the FDA approved treatments here in the United States and will not accept that this is all there is for her. She has dedicated her fight to help others understand this rare cancer and to find successful treatments in the United States. Her strong faith in God and will to never quit has turned a 6 month life expectancy to over two years presently.

Below is an entry that was written by Sunny's husband Mark when she had her third bout. To become updated on her journey please enjoy her posts.

Please check back for updates and event information.

Sunny Carney Carcinoid Cancer Fund
C/o S & T Bank
2190 Hulton Road
Verona, PA 15147


Sunny's husband Mark tells their story...

A mother of three boys, a daughter, the baby sister to a large family, an aunt, a godmother to several, a trusted friend, an outreach volunteer, a business owner and my wife. Sunny Carney lives up to her name every time someone speaks to her; she is beautiful both in and out. She has been my biggest motivator, my rock and my inspiration in tough times, my biggest fan in good times, and most importantly my best friend. Told 14 years ago that having children may not be part of our future because of ovarian cancer, she kept the faith, and is a wonderful mother to our three sons- Austen, Logan, and Nolan. She is always ensuring that they know the Lord, love of life, kindness to others, hard work, and occasionally when to "shape up".

Her boundless energy, healthy lifestyle and positive attitude are infectious. She has served as president of our children’s PTA, organized committees that benefit those who are less fortunate in the community and led drives for those who have been caught up in unfortunate situations. She has done so much for others, usually without letting anyone ever know, I could not begin to list them. Her strong faith in God and modest upbringing has given her a sense of giving that only she can explain. When she successfully started her own photography business, she also started a non-profit division photographing family portraits for area families fighting cancer. Her friends say she is amazing and she simply shakes her head and wonders what all of the fuss is about.

Her mother, sisters, brothers and large extended family will tell you she is the one you can count on to lend an ear when needed and never judge. She was raised by her loving mother and father who was the warden of the Allegheny County Jail and actually spent most of her childhood in the residence connected to the jail. At a young age she witnessed more of life’s tragedies and obstacles through her neighbors, the prisoners, than most of us can imagine.

Although all of the aforementioned is remarkable it is not what makes her truly special. Sunny is a two time cancer survivor and now is currently fighting for a third time. After beating ovarian carcinoid cancer and undergoing serious surgery for carcinoid tumors in her right lung just three years ago, the carcinoid tumors returned in her lymph nodes, liver and bones. The size and proliferation throughout the liver of these tumors mandates immediate chemotherapy in four treatments over the next few months as well as monthly octreotide treatments. These painful treatments will hopefully stop the growth but are not a cure. There are numerous tumors in her spine, her skull, her hip, her leg, and her shoulder...all in the bones and she will wait on potential radiation to fight those.

What my wife has is Carcinoid Cancer Syndrome, an endocrine disease which is rare and spreads from organ to organ. As of right now the only known treatment for remission is administered by renowned clinics in Europe. However the treatment is not covered by our insurance. Our doctors have encouraged us to start raising money and matching grants could follow. Her lead oncologist strongly believes that Sunny would be a prime candidate to be a voice to get the message out regarding carcinoid cancer syndrome, bring this treatment to the United States and encourage approval from the FDA. Without this treatment, the tumors most likely will continue to metastasize in other organs and her fight will be ongoing. Sunny has set up The Sunny Carney Carcinoid Cancer Fund to support her treatments. She believes that once she beats this cancer she can make a difference to others also suffering from Carcinoid Cancer.

Mark A. Carney

Sunny Carney Carcinoid Cancer Fund
C/o S & T Bank
2190 Hulton Road
Verona, PA 15147



Thursday, January 17, 2013

Sunny's Last Blog Rereleased (Not in 3D)

Sunshine I LOVE U...I am not going to mess around anymore when we start our little talks here....I am going to share the most important three words in my vocabulary...they mean as much at this very moment....as the dog snores and stinks next to me...as the Pandora plays Mumfred & Sons...(see kids I am hip for an DVE guy)...as I stare off at the picture from Mothers Day to my left...as the chimes outside play a wind induced symphony to your memory....as the cold wet flakes fall like heavens frozen teardrops....I can tell you that those words will never fade...you will always be the I LOVE U that ME is intending the words for...I say and mean the word LOVE....but when I put in writing to anyone else...no matter who...its luv ya...and I can't answer if that will ever change....As you know the last two nights I have mentioned that for some reason I was heavy with the feeling that dear loved ones of ours were hurting...were struggling with challenges and maybe were losing focus or perspective...As I told you I wasn't planning on the last two nights going in that direction...nor was I sure once they did who was meant to be touched by it....wasn't important then and even less important now...just did what you always did...if you felt guided to write or call or pray or visit someone you did it....I am grasping that concept...no...I am embracing that concept...
 
Anyways beautiful, as I prayed and thought about what we should talk about/share tonight I did something which I hardly ever do...and again the way it happened was so unplanned but after so clearly the right thing to move forward with tonight...As I was casually flipping through the various ESPN family of channels laying in bed grabbing the I-Pad like every night before we talk....and visiting this site...checking the stats like every night....(yes I know I shouldn't care but you taught me to use the site and to monitor things....so don't yell)...and yes I was happy to see that God was still using our little talks and leading people to want to read....(I was a little worried about our talk from two nights ago when people shared they were praying for the guy in Birmingham when I thought I had explained that the whole sequence of that was fictional...came from my overactive mind in an attempt to modernize the Job story...oh well..)...anyways its not the stats that is important for us tonight...I then for some reason scrolled back through old titles...not reading just scrolling...and I don't know why I never noticed this before...because it jumped out tonight Sunshine...like that sunset earlier...thanks for the heavenly kiss btw...I came across the title of your last entry....10/27/12 A DAY FOR ONE SMALL THING
 
But that wasn't what even jumped out the most....it was the three drafts(drafts are unpublished posts for blog-neophytes)...different titles...same day ....10/27/12....I read the drafts....you were in a boatload....no shitload of pain....unable to get up or down off of anything without my help....tired....but you were still alert and sassy and obviously not satisfied with just any old entry....I went back through the last three years of your entrys just curious....this was the only one where there were three drafts before you were satisfied enough to hit PUBLISH.....and these weren't blank titled mistakes like I do sometimes...these were one paragraph long or then some attempts at what you were feeling and trying to convey....I read and reread and reread each draft and can understand why you weren't happy with them....as much as I could tell you were trying to encourage and relate your current physical state...they were oriented to your pain...the physical stuff....the growths,  the bloodwork screwed up, the swelling, etc...I could tell this wasn't you....I pictured you praying again for guidance and then it came to you....so as I have been trying to encourage everyone to not settle for tomorrow...to unwrap today...the gift of the present....and then choose whats inside that present...that each of us can choose what type of present today will be....bitter....or joyful....uplifting to friends and family....or Debbie Downer to everyone you come across....exhibiting faith and inspiring by doing not talking...or mfing everything and turning people away because "if thats what having God in your life means I ain't about that"....
 
So as I read the entry again that you posted on the 27th of October and realizing now that it was the last post you were inspired but had struggled to make certain was just the right one I knew exactly what to talk about tonight...so I am going to read back to you , your final words of  encouragement for us....thanks for not settling for the first , second, or third attempt at sharing...I  know you were tired and in pain sitting writing was is below but HONEY it was so well worth it...I will let your words speak for themselves...
 
I LOVE U
 
ME


A Day For One Small Thing



Many of you who follow my blog know the happens of me physically. I will somehow keep you somewhat posted but I don't want to focus on the negative. I am asking that everyone pray for a miracle. Please pray that some new treatment comes up. I'm currently taking chemo that is really strong and making me really sick. So we need to watch me on it. The kids hate seeing me suffer but they are begging me not to stop. So we are taking things one happy day at a time. It's ok to cry as long as you wipe the tears and laugh with me too. So let's do that. Happy times will keep me here. Cry when you see me then hug me and laugh. Let's have fun. Now enough cancer talk. Enough feeling bad for me. Have fun with me and treat me like the old Sunny.

To continue on, the last few days I have had a lot of time to do some thinking. My head has some good stuff so watch out. You all know if my creative mind gets strifled I start to explode. So I thought I challenge myself to live with some fun. I have a little empty space in my heart that I need to be filled. I bet many of you have that empty space too. I thought I'm going to do, say or do something for someone to fill my empty space. I asked my boys to find 3 people because that's easy and with the recent news they have many empty spaces in their heart. So today Mark, the boys and I are having a family day. We cancelled all their sports event, except one this morning because its a fund raiser for baseball, and we are going to just be together. We use to go away for a weekend in the fall to see all the beautiful leaves and changes God has given us. This year it's a home stay. We are going to fill our empty spaces and I challenge each one of you to fill yours.

"Sometimes someone says or does something really small, and it slips right into that little empty space. Be that someone today. Tell me how you feel too. ". Fill your heart fast.

I love you all,

Sunny

P.S. don't forget your concrete footprints too.