A Madison-based cancer support group named after legendary Saturday Night Live player Gilda Radner has announced that it will be changing its name to accommodate younger patients unfamiliar with the iconic comic, who passed away of ovarian cancer in 1989.
Gilda's Club — so named for Radner's famous remark likening cancer to membership in "an elite club I'd rather not belong to" — boasts some two dozen affiliates across the country.
But, in a tragic sign of the times, at least four, including Gilda's Club Madison, have recently undergone a name change due to Radner's lack of name recognition among potential new members.
"One of the realizations we had this year is that our college students were born after Gilda Radner passed, as we are seeing younger and younger adults who are dealing with a cancer diagnosis," executive director Lannia Syren Stenz told the Wisconsin State Journal. "We want to make sure that what we are is clear to them and that there's not a lot of confusion that would cause people not to come in our doors."
The club plans to change its official name to Cancer Support Community Southwest Wisconsin. A grand reopening celebration is planned for this Thursday, and after that, "the Gilda name will slowly go away."
this makes me sad.