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Pete and Sue Wyckoff Move Towards Emeritus Status

Pete and Sue Wyckoff

Dear Rein in Sarcoma Community,

Two months before she passed away, Karen Wyckoff created and coordinated the first annual Rein in Sarcoma event (Party in the Park). More than 250 friends and supporters showed up that night and raised $10,000 to support Sarcoma cancer research at the University of Minnesota.

Eighteen years have passed since her parents, Pete and Sue, picked up the “reins” from Karen to establish Rein in Sarcoma as the largest and best-known sarcoma foundation in the Midwest. Since 2001, we have reached thousands of people and raised more than $2 million.

Margaret Mead quoteTwo years ago, Pete and Sue began their transition to Rein in Sarcoma Emeritus status (retired honorary status).. To support their transition, we hired professional staff – Janelle Calhoun as Executive Director and Theresa Fetsch as Development Director. We also have a current opening for a Health Programs Coordinator.

Throughout this time, Pete and Sue continued their incredible support for Rein in Sarcoma. In the coming months, we anticipate that they will gradually reduce their involvement on the various committees they have actively supported (most recently Development, Research, and Education).

The Wyckoff’s will complete their final phase of transition at the end of this year. Our fall fundraiser in October will include a Legacy Celebration to honor their extraordinary work.

As Rein in Sarcoma has matured, we have recognized the need to establish a strong financial, donor and volunteer base that will maintain and sustain Karen’s legacy that Pete and Sue have worked tirelessly to uphold. We believe that the strength of Karen’s vision, the talent of our professional staff, the commitment of our donors, the passion of our volunteers and the blessing of the Wyckoff’s will move us forward.

In the meantime, let’s all reach out to Pete and Sue with gratitude for all they have accomplished and with prayers for their future.

With your sustained support of Rein in Sarcoma, Karen’s star will continue to shine bright and serve our community well. Thank you. We are grateful.


Blake Hastings, President
Lisa Griebel, Vice President

Utilizing (iPSC)-Based Tumor Modeling and Genetic Engineering in Sarcoma Research

Beau Webber, PhD

Beau Webber, PhD – Assistant Professor, Department of Pediatrics, University of Minnesota

by Miranda Mead

Miranda Mead is a Ewing Sarcoma survivor and Journalism student at the University of St. Thomas. As an RIS volunteer, Miranda is interviewing RIS research grant awardees, such as Dr. Webber, to bring that work to life for the Rein in Sarcoma community. Read Miranda’s sarcoma story.

Beau Webber, a 2018 RIS research grant recipient, is an Assistant Professor, Department of Pediatrics at the University of Minnesota, as well as Faculty Member of the Division of Pediatric Hematology and Oncology and Stem Cell Institute. While getting his PhD in stem-cell biology and genetic engineering at the University of Minnesota, Webber used genetic tools to help correct mutations that cause disease. He worked primarily with cells called Induced Pluripotent Stem Cells (iPSCs). Basically, iPSCs are adult cells that have been genetically reprogrammed into embryonic stem cells, helping eliminate the ethical concern with using real embryonic cells.

While working with a colleague, Webber was introduced to cancer genetics, which included understanding which genes go wrong in a cell that leads to cancer. Webber’s colleagues created mouse models to do forward genetic screens by using a transposon system, or something called a jumping gene that would jump around and land in genes, causing the cell to become cancerous. Working backwards, Webber’s team studied these genes in the mice to determine which genes became broken, causing cancer. Then his team would identify cells that could be targeted with specific therapies. However, mice and humans are very different from one another, limiting the usefulness of mice studies.Read More

RIS Research Fundraiser in Rochester

Six Mile Grove band

Join us in Rochester, Minnesota on Sunday, August 25 as Rein in Sarcoma holds its first fundraiser for sarcoma research at Mayo Clinic. Rein in Sarcoma expanded research funding to Mayo Clinic in 2017, with $55,000 in research grants to date.

We are thrilled to feature the lead singer of  Six Mile Grove, a great band with Minnesota roots, at the Little Thistle Brewing Company. Enjoy a family friendly afternoon of music, bounce house, beverages, and conversation with fellow RIS patients, survivors, caregivers, sarcoma medical and research professionals, and other community supporters – all while raising money for critical sarcoma research. Entry is $10 at the door. Donations welcome.

Contact Dianna Robinson for more information, or if you’d like to help with the event.

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