William and Laura McGarry have been active supporters of the American Cancer Society in Indian River County since their arrival to our community in 2001.
Bill’s battle with cancer began as a young adult when he was diagnosed with an advanced stage IV non-Hodgkin's lymphoma. He was cured after being placed on a clinical trial at the prestigious M.D. Anderson Cancer Center in Houston, Texas. He attended classes at the University of Florida while receiving 2 years of chemotherapy as part of this trial; this was also when he first became active with the American Cancer Society. His experience as a cancer survivor inspired him to a career in cancer research and to become a medical oncologist. He enrolled in the University of Florida College of medicine where he met his wife Laura who was a nursing student training in the bone marrow transplant unit at Shands Hospital as a pediatric oncology nurse.
They eventually relocated to Houston Texas where Bill returned to M.D. Anderson this time as a physician to complete a combined fellowship in Medical Oncology and Hematology and where he worked as a junior faculty member at M.D. Anderson and the University of Texas College of Medicine. He also served on the Community Clinical Faculty at Duke University before moving to Vero Beach in 2001, to join the practice of Dr. Michaela Scott and Frederick Weeks.
Bill has served as the medical advisor and chairman of our local American Cancer Society Board from 2007 through 2009. He received the American Cancer Society 2009 Hope Award for his motivating and inspiring leadership. In 2012, he was presented the Society’s Courage Award for fighting cancer on so many levels. Both he and Laura have been featured speakers at Relay for Life and Making Strides events.
Committed to educational advancement, Bill currently serves on faculty with Florida State College and University of Florida College of Medicine.
Bill and Laura experienced, first-hand, the devastating effects of cancer on the family when Bill was diagnosed with advanced esophageal cancer in 2011 and was unable to work for a year while he went through chemotherapy, radiation and surgery treatments. Laura served as his constant advocate and caregiver. As soon as Bill recovered, their roles were reversed as Laura developed advanced breast cancer. She has just completed a year and a half of surgery, chemotherapy and radiation.
The McGarrys have three children and are active members of St. Helen's Catholic Church, the Sovereign Military Order of Malta, Rhodes and Jerusalem Knights Hospitaller and are active with various charities both locally and internationally.
For more than a 100 years, The American Cancer Society has been leading the fight to end cancer. With your support, we have helped usher in an era where more people survive cancer than ever before. By translating our research findings into action, we've seen a 20% decline in US cancer death rates since the early 1990s.
3375 20th Street Ste 100
Vero Beach, Fl 32960
772 562-2272 ext 2405