Chancellor’s Chat: September 2016

History is made this week at Rehoboth Elementary School in Sussex County. Governor Markell signed Senate Bill 181 into effect, which legalizes medical marijuana oils on school premises in the state of Delaware.  Freedom fighters Jamie Maedler and her 10 year-old daughter Rylie, who suffered from seizures after having an aggressive tumor removed from her face, mark the very first day she doesn’t have to leave school to take her medicine.

Sometimes the youngest people and their parents carry the heaviest loads.  It is with tremendous sadness that we celebrate the lives and mourn the deaths of two such freedom fighters.  Though they are no longer with us, their legacies live on for the benefit of others; for that, we are grateful.

CD22POTSCHOOLSJack Splitt

Jack Splitt was just 15 years old when he passed at the end of August. He battled the debilitating muscle contractions and pain that accompanied cerebral palsy by using cannabis-derived treatment.  After a school employee ripped a skin patch delivering cannabis medication from Jack’s arm in February 2015, Jack and his mother, Stacy Linn, began their fight to get a law passed to allow schools to create policies to permit a student’s use of medical cannabis.

Jack is the inspiration behind “Jack’s Law”, a Colorado law which requires schools to allow a parent or caregiver to provide medical cannabis treatment to their children on school grounds. Jack’s Law went into effect this past summer.  Jack will be remembered for bringing attention to the medical cannabis needs of kids and his quiet ability—through his smile and facial expressions—to change lawmakers’ minds on the topic of medical cannabis. Our love, condolences and sincere appreciation to Jack’s mother and family for their hard-fought sacrifices… as we celebrate Jack’s impact on improving the quality of life for more kids.  Linn said there’s still a lot of work to be done in her son’s name and she will continue to work with school districts to implement policy. She also wants people to know an organization inspired by Jack called CannAbility Foundation will continue to provide resources for other families. In Memory of Jack Splitt gofundme

RogerBarbour_MarkTilghmanFuneralHomeRoger Barbour, Esq.

Roger passed away in early September after suffering a heart attack. He’d lobbied tirelessly to successfully change New Jersey law to allow minors the right to take medical cannabis as an edible dose in NJ schools. Roger drew inspiration and passion from his 17-year-old daughter Genny, the Purple Ribbon Warrior, who suffers from severe epilepsy and autism.

The law Roger had advocated for is now awaiting NJ Governor Chris Christie signature. His generosity and steadfast love for his daughter has paved the way for other parents with children who need medical cannabis while they’re at school. He was only 51, and our hearts go out to Roger’s wife Lora and his daughters Genny, 17, and Marlee, 13.  To follow Genny’s journey, visit Genny’s Purple Ribbon Journey on Facebook.

rylies smile foundation

Oh, and little Rylie Maedler? The diligent 10 year-old has even bigger plans for the future. She wants to work on having oils available in hospitals.  You can help her further her mission hereGo get ‘em, Rylie!

 

 

Dale 1 bwDale Sky Jones
Oaksterdam University
Executive Chancellor

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