Dance Blue marathon raises $1,600 for pediatric cancer research

Published 8:33 am Monday, January 30, 2017

George Rogers Clark High School students spent half a dozen hours dancing to fight cancer Saturday night.

In the process, the nearly 40 participants in the DanceBlue mini-marathon raised $1,625 for pediatric cancer research.

Starting at 3 p.m. Saturday, participants were on their feet and performed a choreographed dance routine at the top of the hour for six hours.

All proceeds from DanceBlue are donated to the Golden Matrix Fund, which then supports the DanceBlue Kentucky Children’s Hospital Pediatric Hematology/Oncology Clinic, as well as research done at the Markey Cancer Center.

The fundraising effort has raised nearly $10 million for pediatric cancer research since it was founded in 2006.

The full marathon is hosted annually at UK and participants dance for 24 hours — from 8 p.m. to 8 p.m.

The marathon was started in response to requests from Jared Mynear, a pediatric cancer patient at Kentucky Children’s Hospital.

During the last week of his life in 2002, Jarrett created a list of requests, one of which was to raise funds for improving the Pediatric Oncology Outpatient Clinic at Kentucky Children’s Hospital.

DanceBlue was one of the fundraising efforts born from Mynear’s request.

This is the third DanceBlue event at GRC.

The local program was spearheaded initially by Kelsey White, a 2013 GRC graduate who shared her story about how pediatric cancer touched her life at the event Saturday.

“When I was 10 years old I met face-to-face with the harsh reality of pediatric cancer,” White said. “Childhood cancer stole something important from me, my friend Courtney.”

Dustin Rice, a 2015 GRC graduate, also spoke during the event.

Rice challenged the participants to fully understand the cause of DanceBlue.

“You’re dancing for people like me,” Rice said. “I’m a two-time cancer survivor, and I’m only 20.”.

Rice had thyroid cancer when he was in seventh grade and also was diagnosed with a papillary brain tumor his freshman year of high school.

This year, the marathon was revived by GRC teachers Chelsea Lutz, Samantha Franke and Madison Stack.

For more information about DanceBlue, visit http://danceblue.org.

About Whitney Leggett

Whitney Leggett is managing editor of The Winchester Sun and Winchester Living magazine. To contact her, email whitney.leggett@winchestersun.com or call 859-759-0049.

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