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Finding the Funny Side of Cancer

A non-profit founder taps into humor to make treatment more bearable.

Published in Crains New York Business, October 26, 2021

By: Shaun Sim

Back in 1999, Saranne Rothberg was told she had less than 5 years to live following a diagnosis of stage four triple-negative breast cancer, an uncommon but aggressive form of the disease. After the doctor broke the news, a memory from college crossed Rothberg's mind.

"I remember reading this article about the therapeutic value of humor and laughter," she said, "of how when the author was laughing he was feeling less pain."

Rothberg, who was an educational entertainment and special ed consultant at the time, went to the video store and rented every stand up comedy tape she could carry.

"I needed to fill my days and nights with laughter and comedy."

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