We are Sweet Tea Cancer Connections, also known as STCC.
We exist because our Founder, Tatum Fettig, wife to Jeff and mother to two beautiful children, Judd and Teagan, found a way to give purpose to her pain.
This family’s lives were forever altered in December 2016 when at just 2 years old Teagan “Sweet Tea” was diagnosed with medulloblastoma (a malignant brain tumor).
Tatum and Jeff spent days, weeks, and months at the hospital during their daughter’s diagnosis and entire treatment. They were constantly yearning for another day with their child, praying they would witness her grow up, experiencing the full onslaught of emotions that come with grieving the loss of life they had before and knowing they will never return to that life again; and reverently holding on to the power of hope and the courage to fight with every fabric of their being.
And although they received an immense amount of support from their community of family, friends, and skilled and compassionate medical team, they didn’t know any families who were going through the same thing they were.
Tatum felt isolated. While she sought community through websites and FB groups, she did not find real connections nor information relevant to her immediate needs.
She tried online websites but they left a lot to be desired as far as real connections and information.
Over time, while walking through the pediatric oncology hallways, Tatum happened to meet two other cancer moms. Through those connections she realized that others knew her pain, related to her fight, were finding support and were staying resilient. She no longer felt alone in her journey.
So, because Tatum doesn’t want people to maybe connect with someone, and because she doesn’t want anyone to experience those feelings of isolation and loneliness, here we are.
Sweet Tea Cancer Connections created an App called CoHeals.
CoHeals builds connections beyond happenstance.
Sooze Johnson has 22 years of extensive operations, sales, and marketing experience for the medical device, pharmaceutical, and biotechnology industries securing multi-million dollar Phase I-IV and medical device clinical research trials. The greatest part of volunteering for STCC is the relationship Sooze has developed with Teagan “Sweet Tea” Fettig who adopted her as “Auntie Sooze”. Sooze’s most inspiring role model is Teagan and her incredible resilience, sense of humor, and huge hugs.
Tom is Teagan's grandfather (Papa) and admirer. He is retired from a career in finance and lives near Tatum's family with his wife Suzy (Nana). He enjoys working with his daughters, Tatum and Meghan on CoHeals.
Kim Gooding was diagnosed with Hodgkin’s Disease (cancer of the lymph nodes) at 13 years old. After a summer of surgeries and radiation she has been cancer free for over 30 years. Kim graduated from the University of Washington with a degree in Business Administration and has over 20 years of work experience in the property management industry, most recently as a Managing Director for Greystar Real Estate. She retired in 2015 to spend more time with her family and volunteer with an organization she is passionate about.
Carolyn brings several years of user experience design and research experience to STCC. She graduated from the University of Washington with a Bachelors degree in Informatics and a Masters degree in Human-Computer Interaction and Design. Carolyn has consulted at design agencies and startups around the country, and is currently a software engineer at GoDaddy. She is passionate about helping families through their cancer journey and is inspired by Teagan every day.
Meghan Slining is an associate professor of health sciences at Furman University. Prior to coming to Furman, she held a faculty position in the School of Public Health at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. She is a nutritional epidemiologist with a focus on childhood obesity. Her research examines the social and environmental determinants of obesity and she strives to develop community-based intervention strategies aimed at reducing these determinants. She serves as the lead investigator for community-based obesity prevention efforts in early childcare settings. Meghan is Teagan’s aunt and favorite funny face making partner. Meghan earned her B.A. in multicultural health advocacy from Western Washington University, her M.S. in food policy and M.P.H. in epidemiology and biostatistics from Tufts and her Ph.D. in nutritional epidemiology from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.