Compassionate Use Campaign Advocate Stories

Irvina Booker

Irvina Booker was diagnosed with Multiple Sclerosis in 1992. In addition to debilitating physical symptoms, Irvina was faced with the emotional challenges of losing her ability to walk. She often felt like a burden to her friends and family.

In 2003, a friend battling MS suggested Irvina try medical marijuana. Irvina recalls, "I doubted the results marijuana could bring me. I had never used recreational drugs and I didn't want to break the law; but, as the pain grew worse, out of desperation I tried marijuana. The effects were nothing short of miraculous."

Read Irvina's Story [PDF]


Charles Kwiatkowski

Yearning to reduce both his own suffering and the burden MS has placed on his family, Charles Kwiatkowski decided to try medical marijuana.

He recalls, "I was hesitant about trying marijuana, worried about how or where I would get it, but I was desperate for relief. I couldn't stand the pain. I wanted to be the husband and father my wife and three girls deserve. It worked. As a result of the relief medical marijuana provides me, I can do things that a normal 37 year-old can do, like cook dinner for my wife and give my three-year old a piggyback ride."

Read Charles's Story [PDF]


Sean McGrath

Sean McGrath was 28 years old when he died from a rare form of cancer. Sean had great doctors, a loving family and friends to support him during his illness. But Sean’s struggle was made more difficult because none of the available medications worked to relieve his terrible nausea and vomiting.

Desperate for relief, Sean tried medical marijuana. Sean’s father Don explained, “When one of his doctors recommended he try marijuana for the pain and the nausea, he was initially resistant, but he realized he had to do something. It was a bad situation; he was down to 97 pounds. He didn't know where to get any, but some of his friends did. It worked. It made the other drugs effective because he could actually keep them down long enough for them to work."

Read Sean's Story [PDF]


Don and Gerry McGrath

Our son Sean died of a rare form of cancer in the summer of 2004. He was only twenty-eight years old.

To combat the pain and nausea that resulted from the surgeries, chemo sessions and the cancer itself, he was given every available FDA-approved medication. Unfortunately they were simply not effective.

Then his medical team suggested “off the record” that he try marijuana. He was reluctant at first but he did try it and it worked. For the next 18 months, Sean used marijuana daily and it enabled him to survive and fight the disease.

Read Don and Gerry's Story [PDF]


Scott Ward

Scott Ward is 24 years old and suffers from Multiple Sclerosis. He was diagnosed in November of 2006 while training for the Marine Corps Marathon. Scott went from running five miles everyday to relying on family members to assist him in and out of his bed and the bath tub.

None of the medication Scott’s doctors prescribed managed to alleviate his muscle spasms, pain, and nausea. In fact, the variety of available medications prescribed to Scott, including daily injections, actually complicated his struggle, at times making it impossible for him to move or eat. After losing a dangerous amount of weight, Scott was desperate for relief; he decided to try medical marijuana as a last resort.

Read Scott's Story [PDF]