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In Memory of Charles “Pat” O’Connor

Where to start to acknowledge the accomplishments of Pat?  Charles “Pat” O’Connor graduated from Portland State University, Portland, Oregon with a BA in history, political science and social science.  He served as student body President for two years.  He went on to do graduate work in Soviet studies.  He studied abroad in Switzerland at “The L’Abri Fellowship”.  His course of study was “The Intellectual Climate of the New Theology”.  During his career he obtained certifications in customer service management, estate planning, life/health/casualty insurance, and an advanced certification in patient account. 

·         Pat is the creator and founder of the award winning website “Lymphedema People”.

·         He is a member of the Lymph Science Advocacy Program (LSAP) through the National Lymphedema Network.

·         Pat served on the Board of Directors for the Lighthouse Lymphedema Network for many years and was recognized in 2006 with a Certificate of Appreciation for his service.

Sunnie Bates


Although Sunnie’s right arm was paralyzed from cancer treatments and she suffered from neuropathy, she was always an active member of the Lighthouse Lymphedema Network. Sunnie was one of the founding members, served on the LLN Board of Directors for many years and was one of our strongest supporters. Even with her arm and hand paralyzed, Sunnie would somehow always make her delicious orange pecans to sell at the annual Piedmont Hospital Craft Bazaar. The proceeds from this event benefit our needy patients through our Bandage and Garment Fund.

Sunnie had quite a distinguished career as a pioneer in television and a lifelong advocate for women’s rights. Later in life, her interests focused on Japan. She and her husband, Woody, visited Japan many times and were active with the Japanese community in Georgia. At one time they lived in a traditional Sukiya-styled Japanese home in Buckhead that was filled with Japanese artifacts and a collection of more than 5,000 books on Japan.

Sunnie, we will miss your smile and warmth. Thank you God for the joy of Sunnie.

Cole Sanders

1945 - 2012

Cole was preceded in death by his wife, Libbie Sanders. Both of these wonderful people were long standing LLN Board members. In just a few short years, we have lost them both.

Cole dedicated himself to the care of his wife Libbie and to our organization. His will be a void left unfilled. He will forever be missed by all of us who knew and worked with him over his many years of dedicated service. His life was forever changed when he lost his beloved Libbie just a few short years ago. Our gratitude and our sorrow are extended to the Sanders family during this difficult time. Please know that you, Cole, and Libbie will forever be in our thoughts and prayers.

Libbie Sanders



Wife, Mother, Friend, the true spirit of Christmas


When you say Libbie, you think also of Cole. They were an incredible team!

At the time we met Libbie and Cole, Libbie’s legs were already extremely deformed and in serious condition from her lymphedema. It was actually Cole who found, on the Internet, the diagnoses for her condition/disease. Over the years, we watched Libbie “battle” her health with determination.

Libbie and Cole became active members of the Lighthouse Lymphedema Network, servicing on the board of directors, hosting monthly meetings, summer luncheons, sponsoring the LLN website and simply always being there for us.


Libbie and Cole ran their business out of their home, but when Libbie would go outside, she used her scooter. The very last time we saw Libbie was March 11, 2009, at the State Capitol where the Lymphedema Legislative Committee was hosting an education and awareness forum. The story goes that Cole was in bed with a severe lung infection. He always took Libbie to “everything”, but this day, he said, “Libbie, I simply am too ill to go out”. Libbie asked if she found a way to go, would this be ok? Cole had no idea what Libbie was planning. Libbie arrived at the State Capitol with Bubba, a long time friend and helper for the family. She came wheeling in on her scooter with Bubba in toe pulling a suitcase full of cookies and fruit. They had traveled from Decatur to downtown Atlanta via MARTA. We were all so excited to see her and could not believe how she had gotten to the Capitol. This was our Libbie, always wanting to help and always there for all of us. March 11th was a Wednesday and Libbie died on Sunday, March 15th.


Libbie, our angel, your courage, determination, spirit, and love of family and others is your legacy. We miss you dear friend. God has our angel!

William "Bill" Goering


While studying at Yale University, William (Bill) Goering discovered a passion for fencing that he maintained for over 50 years. Throughout his life, he participated at all levels of the sport: competing, coaching, mentoring and officiating at the international level. He even met his wife, Monica, at a fencing club. Bill was a well-known and well-respected member of the fencing community, and spent his later years in Colorado, supporting the Denver Fencing Center (DFC).

In 2006, Monica and Nathan Anderson, Head Coach and Owner of the DFC, initiated the Bill Goering Memorial Tournament. All proceeds from this annual fencing tournament benefit the Lighthouse Lymphedema Network Bandages and Garments Fund. We sincerely appreciate being the beneficiary of their hard work and commitment in memory of Bill Goering.