Our Champion Families
Families Who Have Created Lasting Impact
Every school day, 46 children are diagnosed with childhood cancer. Often, after children or families go through the journey of childhood cancer, they have a desire to give back as a way of providing hope to children newly diagnosed, or as a way to continue funding the breakthrough treatments that will allow more and more children to be successfully cured.
Children’s Cancer Research Fund is the grateful beneficiary of several activities and events presented by childhood cancer survivors and their families. They are creating a legacy that will impact the world of childhood cancer for years to come.
In 1979, knowing she was losing her 16-month battle with leukemia, 13-year old Katie Hageboeck asked that the money she’d been saving for a 10-speed bicycle be donated to a little-known fund for the University of Minnesota called Children’s Cancer Research Fund (CCRF). Thirty three years later, CCRF has grown from a small grassroots fundraiser into a national non-profit that has given nearly $80 million to researchers at the University of Minnesota. Read More
Marissas’s wish was for her tumor to help others so no other child would have to struggle with the disease. Continuing her dream, Norma and Charlie Angell started Angellfest in honor of their daughter who passed away in 2009 after a determined fight against brain cancer. The annual community event features dinner, music and a silent auction. In just four years, Angellfest has raised more than $100,000 for brain tumor research. Read More
Emma was diagnosed with neuroblastoma at the age of 3. For years, her family has hosted Emma’s Hope in Pepin, Wisconsin. The event brings together the community and has raised more than $230,000 for Children’s Cancer Research Fund.
Team Jack Attack was formed in honor of little Jack, who has been battling an inoperable brain tumor since he was 3 months old. Because of the brain tumor, he has endured several chemotherapy treatments and now has vision loss. Throughout his journey, his parents say he has managed to carry them with his heart of gold and larger than life spirit. Having been formed for over seven years, the team has generated $112,300 since 2009 for Children’s Cancer Research Fund’s Time to Fly.
Raising $55,600 since 2011 for Children’s Cancer Research Fund’s Time to Fly, Joggers for Julian remains true to their slogan, “Prevail No Matter the Outcome.” After almost four years without a single health issue, their son Julian was diagnosed with acute lymphoblastic leukemia. Two weeks after his treatment began, he went into sepsis and lost his battle within a matter of hours. For the fifth year, Julian’s family will participate in Time to Fly to prevail over childhood cancer each year and honor Julian’s memory. Read More
Karl was diagnosed with Wilm’s Tumor as a toddler. After a courageous battle, Karl died. His family holds on to his memory and continues to support the fight for childhood cancer through an annual southern Minnesota golf tournament held in his honor. Read More
Laura was a bubbly 20-year old with a sarcastic sense of humor who showed incredible strength in the face of adversity. After several years of courageously battling osteosarcoma, she passed away in September 2014. One of her last wishes was to create the largest Time to Fly team ever, a wish she was certainly granted during Time to Fly 2014. 240 participants gathered together forming the Laura League and raising $27,860 since 2014 for childhood cancer research.
Katie, 20, was known for being the life of the party and her shining spirit. After she passed away from her five year battle with osteosarcoma, her siblings and friends started a softball and kickball called Love Beer Hate Cancer for Katie Jurek. Occurring for more than five years, her friends and family describe the event as a celebration of life to benefit children and families suffering from the effects of cancer. They’ve raised nearly $59,000 for childhood cancer research. Read More
Kendal was a bright and passionate 17-year-old who battled cancer not once, but twice. To continue the legacy of Kendal, who passed away from acute myelogenous leukemia (AML) and who also battled acute lymphocytic leukemia (ALL) at age 4, her family started the organization Team Kendal Kidz. Ardent about finding a cure for childhood cancers, Kendal wanted to bring awareness to these devastating diseases. Each year, Team Kendal Kidz puts on concerts to raise funds for childhood cancer research. To date, they’ve raised over $100,000. Read More
Wanting to be known as the kid who went down fighting and didn’t really lose, Zach Sobiech not only continued his legacy through his song “Clouds,” but also through his Time to Fly team, Team Up Up Up. Together with 92 teammates, Zach’s team has raised $29,000 since 2013 and became rookie team of the year. After bravely fighting osteosarcoma for over four years, Zach Sobiech passed away from osteosarcoma in May 2013. Read More