Aach, along with her husband Dr. Doug Aach, received the Community Champion
Award from the Marfan Foundation at the Foundation’s Heartland Gala in St.
Louis on March the first.
Aach, formerly Sharon Nettles, hails from Carlyle and is a 1976 graduate of
Carlyle High School. She attended
Kaskaskia College, graduating from the Nursing program in 1978, before earning
her Bachelor of Science degree in nursing from McKendree College and her
Master’s degree in anesthesia from Southern Illinois University at
Edwardsville. She practiced as a CRNA in
Belleville and St. Louis.
decided on attending Kaskaskia College after hearing about it from a school
counselor. KC’s proximity,
affordability, and the excellence of its nursing program were what drew her to
the school. “[KC] is a great stepping
stone to further one’s education,” Sharon said.
“I remember it as very affordable, and the quality of education is
also has fond memories of her time at KC.
“The OB clinicals stand out in my mind, and the didactics were very
good. Small class sizes meant every
student received individual attention.
The instructors were excellent. I
especially remember the exceptional lectures from Mrs. Bodem.” On a side note, Rita Bodem, KC’s longest
tenured faculty member, is still going strong in the Nursing department.
and Doug are the first recipients of the Community Champions Award from the
Marfan Foundation. Sharon said that
while she is very honored for the recognition, the real heroes are the
supporters of the Foundation, many of whom the Aach’s actively recruited. “The credit really goes to them [the
supporters],” she said. “With their help
the Marfan Foundation can continue its important work of spreading the word
about this condition and helping those afflicted receive an early diagnosis,
which is key.”
to the Marfan Foundation website, “Marfan syndrome is a genetic disorder that
affects the body’s connective tissue. Connective tissue holds all the body’s
cells, organs and tissue together. It also plays an important role in helping
the body grow and develop properly. About
1 in 5,000 people have Marfan syndrome, including men and women of all races
and ethnic groups. About 3 out of 4 people with Marfan syndrome inherit it,
meaning they get the genetic mutation from a parent who has it. But some people
with Marfan syndrome are the first in their family to have it; when this
happens it is called a spontaneous mutation. There is a 50 percent chance that
a person with Marfan syndrome will pass along the genetic mutation each time
they have a child. This makes it very
important for people with Marfan syndrome and related disorders to receive
accurate, early diagnosis and treatment. Without it, they can be at risk for
potentially life-threatening complications. The earlier some treatments are
started, the better the outcomes are likely to be.”
Marfan Foundation, established in 1981, has a simple mission. “We will not rest until we’ve achieved
victory—a world in which everyone with Marfan syndrome or a related disorder
receives a proper diagnosis, gets the necessary treatment, and lives a long and
full life.” Those with questions about
Marfan syndrome are urged to visit www.marfan.org.
Marfan Foundation’s Heartland St. Louis Gala was held in the Grand Ballroom at
the Four Seasons Hotel in St. Louis.