March 10, 2013
NEW ORLEANS - After Tulane baseball defeated High Point 11-10 on Sunday, the baseball squad - along with fans and other athletes - shaved their heads to raise awareness for pediatric cancer, raising over $10,000 for the Vs. Cancer Foundation in the process.
Half of the money raised will be used towards finding a cure for pediatric cancer, and the other half was donated to Ochsner Hospital in order to build a new teen room for children who are battling cancer.
"I don't think today could have gone much better," said Chase Jones, founder of the Vs. Cancer Foundation. Chase is also the nephew of Tulane baseball head coach Rick Jones, and a pediatric cancer survivor. "We raised this money in about three weeks, which is not a lot of time."
The entire baseball roster participated in the head shaving event after the day's ball game. A pediatric cancer patient named Ethan visited the third baseline, where he helped shave the head of Tulane outfielder Briggs Barrios.
"I think for him to come in and shave a guy's head, knowing that we are turning around and helping his treatment this year is a very tremendous feat we pulled off," said Chase Jones. "I watched Ethan's dad cry tears of joy while his son shaved Briggs' head."
Fans were able to join in on the festivities. For a donation of $50, the Green Wave faithful took to the clippers to have their heads shaved, as well.
Chase Jones was an 18-year-old freshman at the University of North Carolina when he was diagnosed with an inoperable brain tumor. When his teammates on the Tar Heel baseball squad shaved their head in solidarity to honor him, he was touched.
After Chase was treated at MD Anderson in Houston, he was given a clean bill of health, and he has spent his adult life raising funds and awareness for pediatric cancer. In December, he founded the Vs. Cancer Foundation, a nonprofit organization dedicated to saving kids' lives by empowering athletes and communities to fund lifesaving childhood cancer efforts. Chase travels around to different high schools and universities, giving athletic teams the opportunity to use their platform to raise money for a worthy cause.
"Being an 18-year-old and being diagnosed with cancer put me in a world that I could see what childhood cancer was like, and it also allowed me to see the impact collegiate athletes can have," said Chase. "After I was diagnosed, the prognosis was great. I was blessed though, and when I got out of treatment, my teammates shaved their heads in honor of me. It was a very powerful statement. Over the course of the remainder of my collegiate career, the idea just kept coming back. We continued shaving our heads, but by my junior year, we started raising money behind it, and I realized that student-athletes really had the platform to raise money and bring awareness to the situation." Childhood cancer is the number one disease killer of children. Thirty-six children are diagnosed with cancer each day in the United States, and over 175,000 are diagnosed annually, worldwide.
To learn more - as well as make donations - about the Vs. Cancer Foundation, visit vs-cancer.org.
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