Jordan-Rieger Fund for Pancreatic Cancer

The Jordan-Rieger Fund for Pancreatic Cancer was started in 2008 by two families who lost loved ones to pancreatic cancer.

Joyce Fox-Jordan

Daughter, wife and mother Joyce Fox-Jordan was diagnosed with pancreatic cancer after seven months of being treated for other conditions. Her family searched for the best treatments, hospitals and doctors, and enrolled her in a promising clinical trial. She responded to the drug and the tumor stopped growing — and even showed signs of decreasing. Shortly, however, doctors discovered that her cancer had metastasized into the liver, which required immediate treatment, chemotherapy and the discontinuation of her experimental treatment.

The setbacks began. The liver tumor did respond to treatment, but the pancreatic tumor began to grow again. At that time, the clinical trial drugs were not approved in combination with other drugs; thus, the treatment of the pancreatic cancer was lost. It has since been determined that she contributed to the FDA approval of a new chemotherapeutic treatment for pancreatic cancer. Joyce fought for 23 months and passed away at the age of 61. She is survived by her husband of nearly 40 years, Charles, and three children: David, Pamela Yoder and Jennifer Pickett (all Purdue graduates). She left behind three grandchildren. There are now an additional five grandchildren she didn’t have a chance to know.

Robert Rieger

The beloved husband, father and grandfather was a 30-year testicular cancer survivor at the time he was diagnosed with pancreatic cancer. After six months of treatment for stomach pains, the doctors performed exploratory surgery, where they discovered the pancreatic cancer.

Mr. Rieger’s tumor was inoperable; therefore, there were few treatments available. He started chemotherapy right away and responded well. He gained weight, and the tumor size and cancer markers decreased. However, after seven months, his tumor had spread throughout the abdominal cavity. He died after 10 months of treatment at the age of 66.

His wife of 43 years, Carolyn, and their four children: Robin Walsh, Christine Whipple, Robert Jr. and Elizabeth, in addition to nine grandchildren, survive him.

Diagnostic challenges

These stories demonstrate that not only is pancreatic cancer difficult to diagnose, but no cure has yet been discovered. We are committed to raising money and awareness for advances in detection, diagnosis, treatment and the cure of this deadly disease. Join us to find the cure.

To give to the Jordan-Rieger Fund for Pancreatic Cancer


Continue to the Giving page, decide on your gift amount and then select Jordan-Rieger Fund for Pancreatic Cancer.

By mail

Purdue Foundation
Gift Processing
% Jordan Reiger Fund
P.O. Box 772401
Detroit, MI 48277-2401