El Dorado Artist Melinda Cameron-Godsey Donates Original Painting to UAMS Cancer Institute

By Susan Van Dusen

Titled “Hope,” the large, colorful acrylic painting of monarch butterflies can be viewed on the first floor near Infusion Clinic 1 and is a permanent addition to the Cancer Institute’s collection of art created by Arkansans.

“The monarch butterfly has been used a symbol of the Cancer Institute for many years and represents hope for all patients who come seeking hope and healing,” Cameron-Godsey said.

It was given in honor of the doctors and nurses who provide compassionate care for Cameron-Godsey’s ongoing cancer treatment. To celebrate the painting’s installation, she was joined by her physician, Liudmila Schafer, M.D., medical oncologist and assistant professor in the UAMS College of Medicine Department of Internal Medicine; her daughter, Courtney Cassinelli; friends; and oncology nurses.

The painting also honors Kent McKelvey, M.D., director of Cancer and Adult Genetic Services and associate professor of family medicine and genetics in the UAMS College of Medicine, who was unable to attend.

In 2015, Cameron-Godsey was diagnosed with stage 4 linitis plastica, a rare stomach cancer that spreads to the muscles of the stomach wall, causing it to harden and become rigid. She remains under the care of Schafer and travels to the Cancer Institute in Little Rock for regular treatment.