Why I Give: Jeff Gordon Children's Foundation
Five-time Brickyard 400 winner Jeff Gordon celebrated 13 years of partnership with Riley Children’s Foundation on Thursday, July 24, during his annual bowling event in Indianapolis. Since 2002 the Jeff Gordon Children’s Foundation has raised $3.5 million in gifts and pledges for breakthrough pediatric cancer research.
Proceeds specifically benefit The Jeff Gordon Children’s Foundation Pediatric Cancer Research Fund at Riley Hospital for Children at Indiana University Health and the Wells Center for Pediatric Cancer Research at Indiana School of Medicine. Funding provides vital resources for researchers seeking to impact treatments, therapies and cures.
“When we hosted our first bowling tournament those many years ago, we had one simple vision: to help children with life threatening illness being treated at Riley triumph over their disease and go on to lead healthy lives,” said Gordon. “I am so proud of the work that is being done at Riley Hospital. Research remains our top priority to ensure one day we reach the day when no child will face the uncertainty of cancer.”
The celebrity lineup included eight Riley kids, all patients at the Riley Hospital Cancer Center. They were invited to meet and bowl with Jeff Gordon at “The Hula Bowl” themed event.
• Cameron Bland, 17, Bloomington
• Karsyn Bratch, 11, Wabash
• Kaleb Buck, 16, Franklin
• Tatum Parker, 13, Indianapolis
• Olivia Pierce, 8, Hobart
• Coltan Schmidt, 4, Greensburg
• Aleigha Sweet, 12, Fort Wayne
• Ariana Tejada, 10, Indianapolis
The event was overflowing with laughter, a live band, sponsor-filled bowling lanes, cancer survivors along with their families, VIP guests and an abundance of generous supporters of Riley Hospital and the Jeff Gordon Children’s Foundation.
Every year approximately 220 children are diagnosed with cancer in Indiana. Riley Hospital treats 85 percent of those cases.