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

Wednesday, January 30, 2013

The World Needs A Little More Sun

Sunshine as you know these past several days we have started a conversation each night...and words have been tough to find....partly because I was trying to lead without waiting for Him to help with the script...partly because so much has been going on I didn't know where to combine the two...we have had our private moments...I treasure those...but its good to have this talk tonight...I LOVE U....I had prayers answered today in so many ways that its you know things have been overwhelming lately around here....don't need to go into know...well as the bottom came close to falling out for me...when "I" let go and asked "Him" to take over....completely...guess what...He was still there....(yea I know you know that....but thats cheating because you are up there).....took all of no time this morning for Him to show me that he is still in charge...just got to resign and make Him CEO again....I forget that as I get caught up in tears...even my successes....its not my....thats the problem....its His....He wants them...Amazing....and with your footprints all around me how stupid to overlook...sorry Sunshine...but as things went along today He was everywhere...

As you know it had gotten to the point where I was so wrapped up in my issues that I wasn't able to finish our talks the last few nights....I wasn't able to reach out...and there are people hurting....people we love...people we don't know well but are old friends from long ago...and family and friends of friends...I was so absorbed in an "I" Problem that it was humbling when I couldn't finish our talks here because "I" didn't have any inspiring words....big kick in the ass wakeup call trust me Sun....Sure I was praying but it was not a surrendering was a going through the motion prayer...yep embarrassed to say it Sun but it issues had stripped me of the ability to honor my promise to you....

There was even a scripture that had jumped out at me....the story of John The Baptist getting beheaded from Matthew and how Jesus responded....if we are to be like Him we follow His lead...anyways in Matthew 14 John is beheaded....Matthew 14:12 reads "John's disciples came and took his body and buried it.  Then they went and told Jesus."  So you are right Sun that isn't particularly special but only Matthew writes about what happens next in this context...continue to vs 13...."When Jesus heard what had happened, he withdrew by boat privately to a solitary place.  Hearing of this , the crowds followed him on foot from the towns."   What does this show Sun?  It meant a lot to me when I read it...this is another example of the human side of the God made flesh....Jesus needed some down time....His "boy" had just been guess is He went off to mourn and pray for a few....also probably knowing another step in his journey to the cross was scratched off the prophecy list...He wanted down time...solitary....I can't tell you how many times I just want that....down time...But look at Vs. 14...."When Jesus landed and saw a large crowd, he had compassion on them and healed their sick."  Wow.   He didn't even have time for himself.   Instead of turning them all into stone....or getting angry and retreating somewhere they could never find him....he had compassion and healed their sick....this to me was the message challenges.....we are to have compassion on others in need....and there are no "timeouts"...when it comes to that...

As you know the story of an old Dice classmate who haven't seen in literally decades(yeah sucks to admit that for many reasons) who was a fun girl to party with back then but now has a son who is soon to be 13....been bullied for a long time...until finally he posted on FB last week that he was going to take his own life and a lot of lets just say drama has happened since because of the parents of the bullies apparently reaching out to authorities....its been so hard....she follows our talks..I can't say I know well enough where her faith is but between you and I it seems real strong...its been so hard following this....and I wasn't sure how to offer anything because it was I not He the past several now that self-absorption is over....was half listening to news this afternoon while working and got transfixed with a comment made..."Boy today is one of those days you don't leave for break...because the news room is abuzz....Hostage situation in Alabama continues with a six year old and a bus driver dead...three shot in an office in Arizona suspect still loose...explosion in a hotel at Sea World in San Diego...NJ Senator maybe involved in underage prostition investigation....Israeli's bomb Syrian arms convey....tornadoes....6.7 earthquake in Chile..."...holy was as if the world was devoid of any good became obvious that what the world needs is to remember that the darkest of hours doesn't mean the Son(pun on words for you Sun) has left...He is still here....and like the story of Paul and Silas in prison from Acts 16 where at midnight the darkest of their midnight...middle of prison...they were praying and praising....and the other prisoners were never know how many people watch how you handle your darkest moments...will you walk the walk or will you fall flat like they expect you to....anyways Paul and Silas were not the following this story of this mother from Dice days gone by and how she has responded and asked for letters for her son Noah...simple notes to help his self worth....thousands of responses from around the world....She is not alone...nor is Noah.....sure she had the initial moments of anger...who wouldn't have...and then hurt and seperation....but she decided to make a positive out of it for her son....AMEN....and Damn inspiring...all across the world...We ARE NOT ALONE....even if its midnight and the world is going crazy around us it seems....Stay the course...if you step off for a moment...get back on....don't ever think its too much for Him...thats when He likes to show just who is in there can be no doubt...but we have to invite and ask him and then trust...and boy can he show who the boss is when we do...

So Sun..thanks for being there the last few nights as I battled with "I" issues...and please put a special note in  for Karen and Noah down is an inspiring story that has risen from a challenge....