Paddle Against Cancer to Hold 4th Annual Event to Benefit Moffitt Cancer Center
Event created by Gene Evans, stage 4 kidney cancer survivor, is expecting more than 150 standup paddlers
Paddle Against Cancer, a fundraiser created by cancer survivor Gene Evans, will hold its fourth annual event benefitting Moffitt Cancer Center on Saturday, May 24 in Treasure Island, Fla. The SUP event, aimed at promoting the benefits of a healthy and active lifestyle, is expected to bring together more than 150 local standup paddlers.
Evans, a senior vice president at Clearwater-based USAmeriBank, was inspired to create the SUP event by his desire to give back to Moffitt and offer support for other cancer survivors. Last year's Paddle Against Cancer raised $31,000, bringing the total raised for the cause to $70,000. Evans is determined to surpass $100,000 in total donations to Moffitt with this year's event.
Free and open to the public, the 3-mile and 7-mile paddle event will begin at 9:30 a.m. on Saturday, May 24 at The Club at Treasure Island, 400 Treasure Island Causeway. Following the paddle, a poolside event will be held at The Club featuring giveaways, paddleboard demonstrations, cancer survivor stories, and a live band.
"Moffitt is an amazing place where they work hard to save lives like mine every day," Evans said. "I am very excited for us to reach the $100,000 mark in donations so they can continue to help patients the way they helped me."
Evans was diagnosed with stage 4 kidney cancer in May 2009, and since then has recovered from four surgeries–including two to remove tumors from his kidneys and his spine. One of Evans' doctors, Frank Vrionis, M.D., M.P.H., Ph.D. and the chief of neurosurgery at Moffitt, said, "Gene's active lifestyle is an inspiration to other cancer survivors. We are grateful for his support towards our research here at Moffitt."
In stage 4 kidney cancer, the cancer spreads outside the kidneys to multiple lymph nodes or distant parts of the body, such as the bones, brain, or lungs. The five-year survival rate for stage 4 kidney cancer is only eight percent, according to the National Cancer Institute. Evans, however, recently celebrated three years of clear scans and attributes his successful fight against cancer to his positive attitude and active lifestyle.
The paddlers in the event will be making donations to Moffitt, and those wishing to make a donation online can visit: MOFFITT.org/Giving
Click 'Donate Now.' Click on 'General Donation,' choose your gift amount, and then click 'Yes, I would like to choose a program to support.' Under the 'Use my gift to support' dropdown, choose 'Other,' then type in ‘Paddle Against Cancer‘ in the 'please specify' text box.
Participants can also make a donation the day of the event.