LLS Man, Woman of Year cam­paign kicks off

Rais­ing money for can­cer re­search

Record Observer - - News - By DUSTIN HOLT dholt@ches­pub.com

MARYDEL — The Leukemia and Lym­phoma So­ci­ety of the East­ern Shore kicked off its 2016 Man and Woman of the Year cam­paign Fri­day, April 1, at Har­vest Ridge Win­ery in Marydel.

The day be­gan the 10week cam­paign in which can­di­dates and their teams raise money for the Leukemia and Lym­phoma So­ci­ety blood can­cer re­search, with the ti­tles “Man and Woman of the Year” up for grabs. Ev­ery dol­lar raised counts as one vote, and the ti­tles are awarded to the man and woman with the most votes at the end of 10 weeks.

The 2015 East­ern Shore cam­paign raised $244,000, and the 2016 goal is to raise $300,000. Can­di­dates range from those with can­cer, peo­ple com­pet­ing in honor of a loved one with can­cer and peo­ple who just want to help.

The Man and Woman of the Year East­ern Shore cam­paign for the Leukemia and Lym­phoma So­ci­ety is in its fourth year.

Join­ing the 2016 cam­paign will be Katie Thoma­son of Par­lour 7 Salon in Den­ton; Amy Demarr of Chop­tank Trans­port in Pre­ston and Mary Kay in Eas­ton; Rich Catan of Hal­ton Group Amer­ica in Ch­ester; Eas­ton fire­fighter Sveinn Storm of Bartlett Pear Bak­ery in Eas­ton; Emily Mur­ray of Church Hill and Anne Arun­del County Pub­lic Schools; Justin Davis of of Gra­son- ville and B/R In­stru­ment Cor­po­ra­tion in Eas­ton; Wil­liam Nielsen of Stevensville and Univer­sity of Mary­land Shock Trauma Cen­ter; Rebecca Kel­lum of Kent Is­land Pe­di­atric Den­tistry; and Corrine Banks of Ocean City and Bal­anced 4 Life Fit­ness/ID LIFE.

Can­di­dates have pages on the LLS East­ern Shore web­site, www.mwoy.org/md/lo­calchap­ter/mwoyes, and the com­mu­nity can make do­na­tions and re­ceive up­dates for up­com­ing events.

“I have a son who is a twotime can­cer sur­viver, so this is my heart and soul,” said LLS East­ern Shore Lead­er­ship Com­mit­tee mem­ber Katie Wil­son. “This is what is go­ing to keep my baby alive.

“I just re­ally thank you all very much for tak­ing the time and energy to put to­ward this cam­paign for the next 10 weeks. Thank you all very, very much. And all of us to­gether are go­ing to raise $300,000.”

The or­ga­ni­za­tion also hon­ored the 2016 Girl of the Year, Colby Fowle, and Boy of the Year, Tyler Von Hagel, at Fri­day’s cer­e­mony. Tyler was un­able to at­tend the event as he cur­rently is fight­ing can­cer.

Coklby was di­ag­nosed with acute lym­phoblas­tic leukemia when she was 3 years old, just be­fore Christ­mas 2012. She was un­der­go­ing treat­ment in 2014 when she was hon­ored as the LSS East­ern Shore 2014 Girl of the Year.

Colby has been in re­mis­sion for a year and led many of the adults on the dance floor dur­ing Fri­day’s kick­off cel­e­bra­tion.

“We are so ex­cited be­cause this child right here is full cir­cle,” said LLS East­ern Shore cam­paign ad­vi­sor Jen­nifer Veil. “This is what it is all about. You can­not tell what this child as been through. We are re­ally thank­ful to have Colby and her fam­ily back and to see Colby do­ing so well.”

Colby Fowle was joined by her brother, Cooper; mother, Kathrine; and fa­ther, Ross.

“I just want to thank every­one for com­ing out and putting in the ef­fort for the next 10 weeks,” said Ross Fowle. “It means a lot to us. Colby got di­ag­nosed when she was 3 and a half years old. Af­ter two and a half years of treat­ment, she is in re­mis­sion. She is do­ing re­ally well.

“You know, 30 or 40 years ago, this would not be pos­si­ble. It is through or­ga­ni­za­tions like LLS that makes it pos­si­ble now. We want to con­tinue and make that less im­pact­ful on fam­i­lies that have to deal with this. Ev­ery dol­lar you raise for this or­ga­ni­za­tion, is very help­ful and means a lot to us.”

LLS East­ern Shore 2014 Man of the Year Ricky Ker­ri­gan at­tended Fri­day’s event and spoke about how Colby Fowle was his big­gest in­spi­ra­tion when he was a can­di­date.

“I’m so happy to see Colby has been in re­mis­sion for a year as of this week,” he said. “Can­di­dates, just re­mem­ber when you are out there, you have goals set, but be flex­i­ble. Things are go­ing to hap­pen. Some events may get can­celed. Some may not turn out as big, but fo­cus on the pos­i­tives of each thing you do be­cause ev­ery dol­lar you raise helps some­one.”

LLS East­ern Shore 2014 Woman of the Year Kris Shana­han, of Ch­ester, raised $100,000 when she was a can­di­date. She was di­ag­nosed with can­cer in 2007 and went nine years with­out can­cer, un­til be­ing di­ag­nosed twice since 2015.

“To me, my big­gest mo­ti­va­tion for par­tic­i­pat­ing in this event was just be­ing able to hope­fully some­day tell my chil­dren their mother is cured,” she said. “I ad­mire you guys for join­ing the cam­paign. It takes a lot of faith and a lot of courage.”

Ridgely res­i­dent Tom Bunce, the 2015 Man of the Year, re­minded can­di­dates to have fun dur­ing the cam­paign.

“For all the peo­ple in here who are deal­ing with loss or are deal­ing with on­go­ing can­cer, just en­joy it for them.,” he said. “You are part of such a great, great or­ga­ni­za­tion.

“It is not just the can­di­dates, it is also the team mem­bers. The teams re­ally help keep things go­ing. Come gala, every­one will stand on stage and we will all re­al­ize we are all one team ver­sus can­cer. En­joy the ride. Trust me, it will be a lot of fun.”

The cam­paign cul­mi­nates with a grand fi­nale gala that will be held Satur­day, June 11, at the Hy­att Re­gency Ch­e­sa­peake Bay Re­sort and Spa in Cam­bridge. Can­di­dates will be rais­ing money un­til the end of the gala when the 2016 Man and Woman of the Year will be an­nounced.

Tick­ets for the gala are on sale. The cost per ticket is $175 and $2,000 for a ta­ble of 10 with ad­ver­tis­ing op­por­tu­ni­ties in­cluded.

For more in­for­ma­tion about the cam­paign, can­di­dates and their teams, visit www. mwoy. org/ md/ lo­calchap­ter/mwoyes/ or find the Leukemia and Lym­phoma So­ci­ety of the East­ern Shore on Face­book.

Fol­low Caro­line/ Dorch­ester Edi­tor Dustin Holt on Twit­ter @Dustin_ Star­Dem.

Leukemia and Lym­phoma So­ci­ety of the East­ern Shore Girl of the Year Colby Fowle, right, dances with Sum­mer Banks, cen­ter, and Cooper Fowle dur­ing the LLS 2016 Man and Woman of the Year kick­off on Fri­day, April 1.

PHO­TOS BY DUSTIN HOLT

Nine can­di­dates from the East­ern Shore will be com­plet­ing to raise the most money dur­ing the 10-week Leukemia and Lym­phoma So­ci­ety of the East­ern Shore 2016 Man and Woman of the Year cam­paign. From left, Sveinn Storm, Wil­liam Nielsen, Rich Catan, Corrine Banks, Rebecca Kel­lum, Justin Davis, Katie Thoma­son, Emily Mur­ray and Amy Demarr.

The Fowle fam­ily thanks the Leukemia and Lym­phoma So­ci­ety of the East­ern Shore and the 2016 Man and Woman of the Year can­di­dates for sup­port­ing their daugh­ter Colby, left, who has been in re­mis­sion for a year.

Justin Davis calls his team “Nar­rows in on a Cure.”

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