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Zaching Against Cancer updates from Julia Lederer and Felicia Fleming. Hear the story of a brave young Terps man and his family’s love and leadership to help others in his memory on “A Cup Of Soup Or Bowl Week” from Costas Inn in Dundalk.


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Julia Lederer, Felicia Fleming, Nestor J. Aparicio

Nestor J. Aparicio  00:05

Welcome back. We are live at Costas. It is the crabcake row I blow out all my guests. They jump when they you know they know what’s going on. It’s fine. Hope I add volume down a little bit. I have got the friends from zagging against cancer, I got to do my promotion. We’re Costas, we’re live which means I’m frazzled, you know, the old nasty nesters back again, all I need to do is go live and I become that creature again. The Miracle lottery is given us these 10 times to crash to give away. I’ve been given away all day long. My son’s been have given them away. We have a whole second batch. We’re going to be Coco’s on Wednesday, Thursday today, fair Friday up at Pappas, to what a good turn here for lots of charities, lots of community organizations, I think we’re up to into the 30s already on day two, I’ve tried tried to get to 100 I don’t think I’m gonna get to I’m going to have 70 or 80 by the end of the week. But good stuff going on my son has been kind enough to produce the show today, JR has been kind enough to try to keep us on the air today. And I’m appreciative of that all of our guests have shown up on time. I’ve only cried once today, three times yesterday. We’ll see how we get it by the end of the week. I think the over under is like a dozen by the end of the week because some of these stories have been tear jerker in various ways. Our friends are weathernation 866 90 nation as well as Jiffy Lube, putting it on. And it’s real simple. You come out and that table starting to get full look at that, I look up and there’s more corn, and there’s more green beans, somebody brought some peas, there’s all sorts of macaroni and cheese, there’s raisins over there. There’s our gold raise. I like golden raisins better, but they’re good looking raisins over there. The Maryland Food Bank and our friends here at St. John’s pantry. We’ve been doing this all week for local organizations. You bring canned goods items for the Maryland Food Bank, and we give you a cup of soup or bowl. It’s clever. I know if we’re gonna be doing this every year. We’re not in Las Vegas. Instead, we’re in Dundalk. And the weather’s better here and the company’s better here as well. I’ve reached out to a lot of people. And this is an organization that I have featured before. And the first thing I did in putting this week together the two pretty public things. I went out on the internet and said, you know anybody that I should feature and zagging against cancer came up from two or three people in my world. And then I went through my folder of the community charity series that was sponsored by coal roofing back in after my wife survived 2016 1718 where I started doing this once a week, every Thursday start my church, every Thursday morning, I’d get up from seven to 10 and do nothing but these kinds of pieces, because it made me feel good. It made my audience connect. And it really grounded me to my wife surviving and other people not having the same good fortune. So I had you guys on Julie, I think I had you on you said to me, I did the show with you before you might not remember I remember everybody’s name. And if I don’t remember you, you’re in my email inbox or unlink you and I’m sort of like a spider’s web. You know, once you come in, it gets all sticky. And then like you can’t leave, you know, it’s like a house of horrors. So we have Julia here and we also have Felicia here. From zagging against cancer. What’s going on? How are you guys? We’re good. How are you? I’m good. I’m glad your mics are working the headsets? Where do you have some soup? Have you eaten in the eat yet?


Felicia Fleming  03:06

I have not. Now some soup. We

Nestor J. Aparicio  03:08

had to do this. Doing this a while right? I mean, this is you know, obviously, tell everybody the exact story because I don’t ever assume people know. But it was brought to me by former host of mine in the afternoon, who speak chirps fan. And it became something that was a little bit of a cause at my radio station. When it first started. It feels like yesterday, but I know it wasn’t yesterday. Yeah,

Julia Lederer  03:29

absolutely. See what the whole story. Yes. Yeah. So Zach was first diagnosed with brain cancer at the age of 10. My parents took him to Johns Hopkins and the doctors told them we’re sorry, there’s nothing that we can do. Just take them home and make him comfortable. I know. Luckily Ben Carson heard Zach’s story and he said I would like to operate, I’d like to give it a try. We have nothing to lose. So obviously my parents jumped on that. And he operated and was able to get parts of the tumor out. But then with with radiation and chemo, he they were able to eliminate pretty much all of it. He had to learn how to walk again, how to talk again, how to eat again, everything that somebody that’s 10 years old already knows how to do. But he was after that declared cancer free. And he went on people

Nestor J. Aparicio  04:14


asked my my wife you asked about my wife. Yeah, my wife has cancer free. So that’s amazing. That’s a day, right?

Julia Lederer  04:20

Yeah, that’s amazing. But eight

Nestor J. Aparicio  04:22

and a half years. Oh, wow. Yeah. Great. That’s awesome. Yeah, it’s awesome. Yeah.

Julia Lederer  04:26

So he went on to Centennial High School and I know you’re a big sports guy. So was


Nestor J. Aparicio  04:30

the Eagles. Go ahead. Yeah.

Julia Lederer  04:33

So Zach, and he played football there. He was a manager for a while and then his senior year, he was like, You know what I’m gonna play and he had the shunt in his head. So my parents had to give him like the big helmet and he was able to go out on the field and play and he was, in his words, living the dream. He then went on to University of Maryland, where he was a men’s basketball manager. Loved it, you know, big, big sports guy. I don’t charge him. Yeah. Okay, I don’t think Gary So

Nestor J. Aparicio  05:00

it is more recent. Yeah. I feel like yeah, he was there five years ago, but it carries me. I mean, the courts got it all. I’ve been doing this story two years. It all runs together. Yeah. I didn’t think it was good, but it was it was church. Okay. Yeah.

Julia Lederer  05:11


But he was sitting in class sophomore year and his left hand went numb and just being a cancer survivor. He knew that that was something that he had to go get checked out. So he went in and unfortunately, he had another brain tumor that was also cancerous. So they operated on him and bout an hour out of surgery. He got out of bed and he flex his muscles made this pose and he told my dad to take his picture. My dad’s like, exactly, there’s blood on your head. There’s, you know, tubes everywhere. Just lay back down. We’ll get your picture later. He’s like no, take it because I want to put it on Facebook and let my friends and family know that I’m okay and I’m gonna beat this. So he did exactly that. And within minutes, my cousins Jonathan and Joey got it and they put up a picture of them flexing and they said t bowling is out in sacking is in. So that’s where the whole sacking phrase came. It wasn’t

Nestor J. Aparicio  05:57

Tchibo thing. It was Yeah. G Boeing was out Zack Yeah. Because that gives you gives you a range of where Tebow was playing. Yeah.

Julia Lederer  06:03

And was when t Boeing was like huge. So it went absolutely viral. There were other cancer patients sending in their pictures, sacking their people from all over the world professional athletes. There were just hundreds and now yeah, it was really movement. It was literally movement. Yeah. So a T Shirt Company, Nightmare graphics reached out and they said we would love to make a logo and sell T shirts. And you can do whatever you want with this t shirt money, go to a big sports game, go on vacation, do whatever you want with it. But while Zack was in the hospital, he realized that not everybody was as fortunate as he was. He was a true story. He was sitting in chemo. And he left got his chemo left in his nice warm car to go to his nice warm house. And the girl that was sitting next to him was now at the bus stop in the rain waiting for

Nestor J. Aparicio  06:48

the bus to pick her up. See these stories? unbeli. Yeah. So


Julia Lederer  06:52

that really, that really hits Zach. And he saw a lot more in the hospital during all of his visits. But he wanted to help other cancer patients that didn’t have that strength, courage, determination, hope that he had. So he took that T shirt money, and he started stalking Against Cancer Foundation. He picked our board of directors. He was very active in it. We were having a golf outing. He helped start the planning of that, but unfortunately passed away in 2014 at the age of 20. So it’s been 10

Nestor J. Aparicio  07:20

years. It has Winston years. When did he pass he?

Felicia Fleming  07:23

He might ash? Yeah. All right.

Nestor J. Aparicio  07:26


So we’re getting up on 10 years next month?

Julia Lederer  07:28

Yes. Yeah.

Nestor J. Aparicio  07:30

How are we doing? How are you doing?

Julia Lederer  07:32

We’re doing good. Yeah, I mean, we’re doing exactly what Zack would want us to be doing and the number of patients that we’ve been able to help. I think he would be astonished.


Felicia Fleming  07:40

Yeah, it’s so I mean, his pose represented, he always said it represented strength, courage, determination, and hope. And he was just amazing and show that in the hospital. When he had it, he wouldn’t have a cape on in the hospital and he would go down to the hall to the pediatric center. And he would you know, all the kids love seeing him and he was always so positive and I want to start crying. Yeah. And we said he was living the dream because a lot of people always ask us because our big gala is coming up and it’s called the Living the dream Gala. And everyone

Nestor J. Aparicio  08:10

always what is this? Let’s do something good. We

Felicia Fleming  08:12

do what’s let me dream? Yeah, so living the dream was Zach’s motto. And we named our gala after Zach’s motto because he always said he was living the dream by being able to help others while he was battling and going through his journey, you know, of cancer. So that’s why we named our gala. It’s our big gala. It’s on April 27.

Nestor J. Aparicio  08:29


April 27. We oriels be under measuring everything that happens, you know, goodbye, this bottle of wine called the prisoner. April 27. And where is

Felicia Fleming  08:43

your family resort? So we raised a lot of our funds through our events. We have three major events. And the gala is in April, all of our events this year at her Valley in Howard County. We usually do the gala at the University of Maryland on the basketball court. I

Nestor J. Aparicio  08:58

guess you play golf there too a little bit. Yes.

Felicia Fleming  09:03

But so this year we’re moving into turf Valley because the arena the basketball arena is having a little bit of renovations done but is that when Zach was the manager at the University of Maryland, they actually dedicated after Zack passed away. They dedicated the manager’s room at the University of Maryland. So it’s now called the Zack letter managers room. So of course the University of Maryland and the basketball team are very near and dear to our heart which is why we’ve done our gala there before he uttered Yeah, absolutely wants to turbo is a term. Absolutely. Yeah. I


Nestor J. Aparicio  09:33

mean, I got so many people on the chirps family that when this was happening, and I guess it happened right around it, but my wife was diagnosed nine days after brother died. Oh, wow. Crazy.

Felicia Fleming  09:44

I remember hearing the story about your wife

Nestor J. Aparicio  09:45

same week. Literally. That’s crazy. Yeah, cuz I it all kind of runs together, you know, over time, but like I was gonna say, like, was that like eight 910? Like, what years? Was it but it was 12 1314 kind of sort of in that range. Ah,

Julia Lederer  10:00


yeah. So he was 10 years old of the first diagnosis, and then he passed away.

Nestor J. Aparicio  10:03

Oh, when I heard of it. Well, yeah, yeah. When he when he did the Zack he

Felicia Fleming  10:07

was in high. Yeah. So he was Yeah. In college 1920. Yeah. So

Nestor J. Aparicio  10:11

I mean it. I would have said 10 years, but you’ve done this gala every year and growing this and trying to follow what he wants you to do. What’s the conscience on doing that? To grow it to do other things above and beyond because you guys just allowed to win it. And I admire anyone I’ve had so many friends die where friends get together, they do a golf tournament for a year or five or 10 in some cases, but it’s sometimes things and you know, you keep it going the spirit of doing this, I guess. You feel like it’ll never stop, right? No,


Julia Lederer  10:42

I don’t think it’ll ever stop. Yeah, I mean, this is what Zack wanted. So why would we stop that? You know? Yeah, right. So just a number of patients that we’ve helped and we see the impact every day.

Nestor J. Aparicio  10:54

What do you doing? Tell me how you’re helping people.

Felicia Fleming  10:55

So we are partnered right now with 26 hospitals in the Baltimore area and cancer centers. So what we do is we help cancer patients financially. We financially support them if they have a copay that needs to be paid. They have rent. That’s do they need transportation, they need groceries, they need their house cleaned, you know,

Nestor J. Aparicio  11:14


a woman in the bed next to my wife. Yeah, that a camp Kimball. And she had three children kill me. Three kids. She had to have nauseous, and there was a patch. The patches are like 250 bucks apiece, right? They were crazy expensive. And my wife had gone through her like nausea in the patches really didn’t help my wife as much as like Dilaudid. And like drugs and narcotics and different things. I mean, every day was a different trip with my wife and to her. This is working today. This isn’t working. This is making her sick. She throw up for days at a time, comas, the whole thing, right? But this woman when my wife was feeling better at one point, this woman in the next room was throwing up and nauseous and awful. And we were trying to help her. And she didn’t have insurance to get the stupid patches that would just stick on it would make her comfort, different comfort. Yeah. So I mean, when I see organizations doing stuff like that, I’m like, you know, my wife was dying. And we call down for chicken soup because she was neutropenic and could only have water literally. And they they brought up a bouillon cube and boiled water. And I’m like, I went to the Chinese joint and brought back proper chicken soup. You know, like literally just give me some chicken broth. Yeah, you know, but like so. When you talk about helping people that are struggling with their illness. Nothing in the world matters.

Felicia Fleming  12:45

Now I mean, transportation it’s a huge barrier between cancer patients getting beat out and rain Yeah, yeah. So we have a part all our hospitals have partnerships with Lift Yeah, we have we have our what our newest program is called the coping with cancer cannabis program where we’re bringing in you know, we help well now that it’s legal, but we will pay for the patient’s registration on the on the website and we’ll get them you know, we’ll let them know what products they need for their for their

Nestor J. Aparicio  13:15

brand. Find a curio wellness. Yeah, great. Yeah, I think she’d like to

Felicia Fleming  13:20

meet you. Yeah, that program is one of our most popular programs right now. And more and more hospitals and doctors are getting on board and we are helping a lot of people with it through the cannabis program.


Nestor J. Aparicio  13:30

You’re gonna get an introduction on that. Yeah, for sure.

Felicia Fleming  13:33

So our our program is called the little things for cancer program because it is the little things we’re helping with groceries and food. We have a massage we bring on, you know, oncology massage therapists to the hospitals to give cancer patients hand and foot massages while they’re going through their treatment. We have a Give me a break from cancer program where what we’ll do is we’ll send someone to the Oriole game or the Ravens game. We’re on a ski trip or a weekend at the beach just to get the new aproved Orioles. Yes.

Nestor J. Aparicio  14:02

Under management, okay, yeah, kids.

Felicia Fleming  14:05


I’m excited for the birds enough.

Nestor J. Aparicio  14:08

Now that they’re going to be freed

Felicia Fleming  14:10

Yeah. I’m going to opening day. Yeah, yeah, it’d

Nestor J. Aparicio  14:12

be singing Leonard Skinner Free Bird. Yeah.


Felicia Fleming  14:16

Zach Lavalle. Yeah, exactly. Love the Ravens in the Oreo. Yeah, he was a big fan. So yeah, so just being able to send a cancer patient who just wants to get away from their diagnosis to the Oreo game or a Ravens game. For instance, we had a toy we met a 12 year old boy in the hospital for one of our programs, which is always a beauty and we bring in hair stylists and, you know, people to do Manny’s and patties on the children’s floor and we’ll give them treats and massages because the parents can’t leave when they’re on that floor. And we met a little boy Wednesday’s, his 12 and he he’s a football player, but since his cancer diagnosis, he can’t play football anymore. So we happened to be sitting there and I said, Hey, do you like the Ravens? And he was like, I love the Ravens. And I said, alright, well I remember that when you if you want to go to the game send me an email. He sent us an email. We got him to the mind the New Year’s Eve game. He was in the hospital for Christmas but he was able to go just sending his family Oh

Nestor J. Aparicio  15:11

my wife wanted to do and she was just go to Raven. Yeah it was the measurement her get now

Felicia Fleming  15:16

Yeah, I mean it’s just it’s a little thing but it gives him a break even for three hours it’s getting his mind his family’s mind off of the normalcy. Yeah, so that’s one one of our programs as well so but our little things for cancer program again with the financial the you know, the co pays and the insurance bills or really whatever we will help with whatever we’ve had people call us can you shovel our driveway? I have bedbugs. I mean, we will do anything that is really needed that they cannot really financially afford foolish Fleming’s

Nestor J. Aparicio  15:47


here show you letters here she lost her brother Zach is acting for cancer. They’re doing a gala in April. I want you to support them and how’s your family? How’s your parent? I think you give me a little update on that’s always the weirdest part because like I see people like you lose somebody. And you ask it’s weird to ask you know, but no,

Julia Lederer  16:07

I thank you for asking. Everyone’s doing well, I actually just had a baby nine months to get my God. His name is Mason, Zachary after Zach and nice. He’s been really good. And my parents are just loving having him around and stuff like bringing a light to all of us. He’s

Nestor J. Aparicio  16:22

talking about maybe one day, you know making me pops. He calls me pop so I don’t need to do that. Yeah, we don’t have any grandkids yet. So God bless you, man. I made him look out turned out. seems great. 39 years later, we’re doing all right. My son’s producing Today we’re here at Costas. It’s only second time I’ve gotten it’s four times I’ve cried down two days. It’s 204. I’ll get their Maryland lottery 10 times the cash we’re giving these away by the way, Oprah one for you. One for you. Window nation 866 90 nation. I want to give them a shout out as well. Their take care of people 0% financing for five years. I’m getting doors this year I did Windows two years ago saving money. I get that little crack under the door it’s time the back door specialty is awful. So that’s going to be my commitment winded ation this year is talking about some doors in addition to Windows also Jiffy Lube, multi care, take good care of my car, your car. I went to the one on York Road but you can go to any of them. They’re all over the place and they take good care of you are friends at Maryland Food Bank and taking care of us today. We are getting tons and tons of I get gold metal flower here. Somebody brought dressed salad dressing thank God for that can have a salad without dressing. So come on by Maryland food bank. If you’re in the neighborhood, we’re getting a free cup of soup or bowl because the big game is this week. So it’s a free cup of Super Bowl. We’re calling it crabcake row. We’re going to be Coco’s on Wednesday. Thursday, we’re going to be at State Fair Friday. We’re going to be up at Pappas in Cockeysville. So give everybody the website tell them what they can do and other things beyond just your gala in case they can’t come to that because you you must have a golf tournament.

Felicia Fleming  18:02

We do we do we have our golf outing is June 26, June 17, excuse me at turf Valley. And we have a big running festival that we hold at turf Valley Town Square and turf Valley. All the information can be found on our website for the run, but I’ll serve drinks at the end. Yeah, we have Bloody Mary’s a beer garden always favors a big party with a live band. So it’s a very fun event. We try to make our events very fun. If you’d like to donate in memory of somebody, you can just go to our website, it’s WW dot zagging against, all the information, Zack story, all the event information and all of our program information is up there as well. One more thing I did not mention is we do do high school scholarships as well, which that application has just gone up to our website. So any high school senior who has been affected by cancer as either being a caregiver or survivor, they can apply for our $2,500 scholarship anywhere. Yeah. And the other thing I want to mention, yeah, it’s very won a scholarship had he was awarded a scholarship when he was in high school. So you know, we that was one of the first programs that we started that day. Yeah. For sure. And one other thing I want to state is we help all cancers and all ages. We don’t We will help if you have been affected by cancer. And we also help the caregiver as well. So yeah,


Nestor J. Aparicio  19:20

I needed help where were you?

Felicia Fleming  19:23

Yeah, I remember reading your story. And we were just in our beginnings, and I totally would have reached out if I didn’t reach out shame on me for not reaching out.

Nestor J. Aparicio  19:32

For me. I mean, it just in talking about it like this week in this way. People come up to me every day in my life and either mentioned one of two things. They were in the March at the Superbowl 11 years ago because there were 10,000 people in that thing, or they asked about my wife or both. You asked about my wife. Yeah, we went on the air. Like you might have been the eighth person today is it because they all think of her as bald dying and because that was now like she’s beautiful and awesome. Good news. Mostly normal. Good. That’s great. So married to me, but you can only be so normal.

Felicia Fleming  20:06


That’s a wonderful story. Yeah, I remember I followed her story. I remember following you on LinkedIn, or likes over Germany. Yeah, I remember I remember you brought it he and he comes to visit, right? And she

Nestor J. Aparicio  20:17

goes to see him for fun to go over there. You know, but, so she went over she did 10 days with her sister, Amsterdam, Paris, they saw Madonna in Paris, went to the Louvre. They saw the Mona Lisa. And they went to the football game with him. He’s big NFL fan. Okay. Okay, so they went to the Colts Patriot game on his birthday. Okay. Very cool. So yeah, they paid too much money sat on the roof for crappy football game, but it’s okay. Yeah.

Felicia Fleming  20:41

I mean, there’s so much cancer in this world going around a lot of I mean, she’s a lucky so lucky. Yeah, I mean, yeah. I mean, everyone has been affected with cancer in some way. Friends, yeah. Family. So it’s just yeah, we have a lot more to do, you know, entering are going on our 10th year and we plan on being around for a long time and helping a lot more patients.

Nestor J. Aparicio  21:03

All right. Well, you guys crushed me. Officially, I’m done. You got to host the show. I’ve been crying too much. Felicia Fleming’s here. Julie letters here from zagging against cancer. You’ve heard about it, you know about it. Now. We know more about it, and we got an update on it. That’s even better. Thanks for having us. Thank you. Next time you come back, you can say you had me on the last time. I’ll remind you next time. I’m gonna be that host every time it says, Well, we’re at a time. I guess you’ll have to come back next time to visit again soon. So we’ll do that. Where are the Coco’s tomorrow. You can visit me there. You can come visit me on State Fair in Gainesville. On Thursday. I’ll try to compose myself during the break here. We’re doing live radio so I’m a little bit on the swivel don’t 40 hours live radio went home last night. My wife took one look at me. She’s like, Oh, you’re gonna you’re gonna be hoarse by Friday. I’m like, probably Yeah. I’m working on it. I bet. All right, we’re back for more from Costas to library to MC vet MC vet it coming up and Mr. Bruce is going to be here. I’ve also got some friends who just dropped by and said they have a cause. And we’re going to talk about that this hour. So we’re going to do I have a whole bunch of people coming by but my favorite guest no offense to you is going to be the girl who was in my elementary school play and I haven’t seen her and Trish Woodward is here from Camp opportunity. It’s going to happen to three o’clock our show your soft side, Brian Marchetti who play Santa Claus throughout the east side of town is going to be here and I hope he wears his outfit. And St John’s food pantry here on behalf of the Maryland food bank, a lot of people a lot of ground a lot of things to cover. And three more days of this going on. It is a marathon radio THON and nasty THON of good deeds and good people. It is a cup of Super Bowl it is crabcake row we’re back for more from Costas in my homeland, a beautiful Dundalk. I’m importing that our county people here. Stay with us back for more in Dundalk right after this.

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