When Liza Marie Martinez was diagnosed with a rare cancer earlier this year her loved ones came together to help.
Martinez, a 32-year-old mother, was diagnosed with stage four of an ultra rare cancer called Uterine PEComa, an aggressive sarcoma of the uterus and one with only 38 reported cases in literature at the beginning of 2021.
Due to its scarcity in published cases, treatment options for Martinez have been difficult.
She was referred to MD Anderson’s Sarcoma Center to receive treatment from a specialized cancer team.
Unfortunately, Martinez’s insurance did not cover any of the medical expenses there, and the medical bills are too costly for her to continue treatment.
When word of her illness reached her long time friend, Paul MaGee, Global Groove owner and concert festival promoter, he decided he needed to help.
“They shouldn’t be worrying about the financial aspect of this. They should be focusing on one thing, and that’s getting better,” he said.
MaGee spoke to his partners and they decided to kick off their “Life’s a Beach” three-day music festival with a fundraiser to help Martinez and her family.
On May 28, Martinez and her husband watched DJ MAKJ at the Landmark center, where the event brought in $1,892 in donations.
The event inspired him to make Friday fundraisers a regular occurrence for people in need in the Rio Grande Valley in hopes that they will know they are not alone.
A british native, MaGee said the Valley has adopted him and supported his events for over 25 years. He believes it’s his turn to give back to the community and this is the best way he knows how.
“I’m very excited for what Paul can do for the community and what he can do to help others because he is genuinely a kind person and always trying to help people and put smiles on their faces,” Martinez said. “So I’m excited and happy that I was the first one.”
She said MaGee’s selflessness meant the world to her and her husband.
In addition to the concert’s donations, Martinez’s sister-in-law, Yajaira Flores, started a Go Fund Me account to aid with medical bills. The family’s goal is to reach $50,000.
“We appreciate everyone’s support and are extremely grateful if you can donate, share, keep her in your prayers or just send positive vibes,” Flores wrote on the GoFundMe account.
With the help of her loved ones and the community, Flores said she knows her sister-in-law can beat this cancer.
It takes a village to get through difficult times, MaGee said, and invited other Valley natives in need to reach out to him via email for future fundraisers through Global Groove.
Those interested can email MaGee at [email protected].