Fresno State graduate raising money for mother’s funeral expenses

L-R: Kelleen Kennon, Dana Kennon, and Caroline Peltz. (Kelleen Kennon/Go Fund Me)

Back in December 2019 the Clovis Roundup covered Clovis resident, Dana Kennon, 58, as she fulfilled her one last wish to see the lights at Disneyland.

Kennon was diagnosed with stage four breast cancer in 2017. As Kennon’s sickness became progressively worse she knew she didn’t have much time left. All she wanted to do was go to Disneyland and see the lights, one last time.

Through the power of the internet and old friends, that wish was fulfilled. Kennon’s former high school classmates raised the money and turned her Disneyland wish into reality.

Though Kennon was able to feel like a kid again at Disneyland, shortly after she got back things took a turn for the worse.

Kennon was on her last days as she was taken off all life sustaining medicine and sadly the cancer won, she passed Jan. 19, 2020. She was being cared for in the comfort of her own home on her last days by her daughter, Kelleen Kennon, 21, and Kelleen’s fiancé Caroline Peltz.

Kelleen took care of her mom while juggling school and work full time in addition to handling finances.

Kelleen graduated from Fresno State in Fall 2019 with her Bachelors in psychology. Dana wanted to see her daughter walk but because time was limited and the graduation ceremony wouldn’t take place until May 2020, Kelleen held a ceremony in the hospital.

“She told me it was the proudest moment of her life because she finally got to see not only the achievements that I made but also what kind of a woman she raised me to be,” Kelleen said.

Though she said this has been the hardest thing in her life, when asked what has gotten her through it she answered her fiancé, Caroline Peltz.

“Not going to lie, I have my moments. I’m not the strongest person but the person who has kept me grounded the most is Caroline, my fiancé,” Kelleen said. “That’s the thing is everyone forgets her. Everyone interviews me and talks to me but she’s my mom’s daughter too.”

Peltz has been there every step of the way. “She’s been the rock in this entire situation. She’s been by my mom’s side taking care of her, changing her diapers, wiping her butt, things I wouldn’t be able to handle emotionally,” Kelleen said. “Caroline has just made everything easier, she brings a little bit of light into every single day,” Kelleen said.

Kelleen wants her mom to be remembered for the incredible human being that she was.
“If any of my friends growing up needed a place to go to be themselves she gave them that place. If they needed a mom to love them she gave them that mom,” Kelleen said. “My mom has just been the rock for so many people. I didn’t realize because I guess she just raised me to be that way and it’s normal to show love to everyone and it’s normal to love everyone for who they are and what they believe.”

Kelleen said she is grateful for this last month to be able to see the impact her mom has made on everyone in the world.

Kelleen started a fundraiser to help pay for her mom’s funeral and cremation services.

If you would like to donate, go to:

Haley Graduated from Fresno State in May 2019 with a Bachelor of Arts in Media Communications & Journalism. While her emphasis is Multimedia Haley took classes on reporting and media writing. She has a passion for her major and strives to be versatile as she can in her field. During her last semester at Fresno State she was an intern at CMAC. She gained hands on experience working on live productions for the community.