Thursday, February 9, 2012

College students helping kids fight cancer 2/9

Reilley and Eddy Barringer are two of some 15,000 Penn State students involved with THON, which holds a two-day dance marathon on the school's main campus each February to raise funds and awareness for pediatric cancer treatment and research.

I wrote about the Ballston Spa brother and sister's involvement with the world's largest student-run philanthropy – and how their own family's lives have been touched by cancer – not too long ago. You can read that story here.

They were in downtown Saratoga Springs last weekend, holding coin drops in front of local businesses during Chowderfest. This Saturday, they're hosting an Italian Dinner at the Knights of Columbus Hall in Saratoga Springs. Proceeds from the event will benefit THON, which has raised more than $78 million over the past four decades.

Here's a video that showcases what THON is all about:

The dinner will be held from 6 to 8:30 p.m. Tickets are $10, children 10 and under are free. You can purchase tickets at the Knights of Columbus Hall, 50 Pine Road, either in advance or at the door. You can also secure seats by calling 796-4021, or by e-mailing Online donations can be made here.

I ran into Eddy Barringer during Chowderfest and asked him what it was like being down in State College when legendary football coach Joe Paterno passed away last month. He told me that he was one of the thousands of students who lined the streets for Paterno's funeral procession.

He couldn't believe how quiet the students got when they saw the procession -- particularly Joe Paterno's wife occupying her late husband's seat on the football team bus. I found a YouTube that conveys the moment better than I can.

It was surreal, he said.

I'd argue the work the THON volunteers do is just as unbelievable.

Until next time,


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