Debbie’s Dream Foundation: Curing Stomach Cancer Announces the Death of President and Founder Debbie Zelman

Press Release – PLANTATION, Fla., Dec. 26, 2017 /PRNewswire/ — Debbie’s Dream Foundation: Curing Stomach Cancer (DDF) announced with heavy hearts that Debbie Zelman, visionary President and Founder of DDF, died at the age of 50 on December 23, 2017. Zelman led the organization since its inception in 2009 which has contributed more than $700,000 in research funds; advocated for increased federal funding that resulted in more than $18 million awarded to stomach cancer researchers by the Department of Defense; grown to 27 chapters worldwide including chapters in the United States, Canada, and Germany; and has made a difference in the lives of countless stomach cancer patients, caregivers, and their families.

Debbie’s courageous journey captured the hearts and attention of many prominent figures. In 2011, she was featured on an episode of the Dr. Oz Show about stomach cancer. In April 2017, New York Yankees Manager, Joe Girardi, spoke candidly during a pre-game press conference about Debbie’s miraculous journey with stomach cancer, after losing his sister-in-law to the disease a few years prior. Debbie worked closely with congressional members to raise awareness about stomach cancer and create change at state and federal levels. Stomach cancer patients, their caregivers, and their family members often credit Debbie’s story as the reason they’ve found hope and resources to help them navigate this deadly disease.

DDF Executive Director, Andrea Eidelman, made the following statement Saturday to the DDF Board of Directors and staff, “DDF has lost a courageous, inspirational leader and the world has lost an incredible human being. Debbie inspired us every day with her unparalleled strength and determination. No words can sufficiently express our sorrow about Debbie’s death. We lost our hero today and we will honor her memory by dedicating ourselves to continuing the work to which she was so passionately devoted.”

For more information about DDF, visit, or call 954-475-1200. In lieu of flowers or condolence gifts, the family asks that donations be made to DDF. In addition, condolence messages can be shared at

About Debbie’s Dream Foundation: Curing Stomach Cancer

Debbie’s Dream Foundation: Curing Stomach Cancer (DDF) is a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization dedicated to raising awareness about stomach cancer, advancing funding for research, and providing education and support internationally to patients, families, and caregivers. Debbie’s Dream Foundation seeks as its ultimate goal to make the cure for stomach cancer a reality.

DDF was founded in 2009 by Debbie Zelman after she was diagnosed with stage IV incurable gastric cancer in 2008 and given only weeks to live. DDF now has a Scientific and Medical Advisory Board of world renowned doctors and chapters throughout the United States and in Canada and Germany. To learn more about DDF, please visit us at
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