Knox DJ was rocking Circle Park on the University of Tennessee campus, the crowds of teams started filling the street, and balloons filled the air! The fall weather was crisp for Knoxville’s Light the Night event. Team Bad to The Bone Marrow raised more than $2,300 to support the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society’s research and support services for patients. This, during the same week that others in the community were holding a fundraiser to help the Baker family cover their own medical expenses.
Leading the way was a cheerful 5-year-old Avery Baker and her family, with both her and dad, Chuck, battling blood cancers. She made sure everyone kept moving at a brisk pace, although Avery and other children made an important stop to visit Smokey, the UT mascot.
We previously shared this family’s story to start off our STRONG, not scared series. Glow with The Show ears from Disney Parks Blog helped make the event extra fun. Special thanks to the Akers family for sponsoring my spot on this team by honoring their daughter, Rhea.
These public shows of support for fighting chronic diseases like cancer have become commonplace. Hopefully they’re making some progress in supporting patients and developing better treatments. Less common are events like Tuesday’s Stroller Brigade outside the US Capitol focused on prevention. That’s where I’m headed to join hundreds of concerned people from around the country supporting Safer Chemicals, Healthy Families. While no one has all the answers, according to top pediatricians and scientists, there are steps we can all take today to start achieving a brighter, healthier future. Even if you can’t be in DC on Tuesday, I hope you’ll join in online.