Kiteboarder will cross Lake Pontchartrain in the 2009 Leukemia Cup Regatta

March 11, 2009 | Kiteboarding

2009 Lake Pontchartrain Kiteboarder Crossing

The 2009 Leukemia Cup Regatta is a series of adrenaline infused sailing races that take place at yacht clubs throughout the United States. This Regatta brings sailors, spectators and non-sailors together through competition to raise money to fight leukemia, lymphoma, and other blood cancers.

I'm participating as a fundraiser in the 14th annual Leukemia Cup Regatta in New Orleans, Louisiana. The New Orleans Leukemia Cup Regatta will take place the weekends of March 21st-22nd and 28th-29th, 2009.

I hope to highlight one of these exciting race weekends by kiteboarding across Lake Pontchartrain, approximately 24 miles from the Northshore to the Southshore. I am a Kiteboarder and it is my goal to raise $10,000 in the coming weeks for the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society.

It is my aim to kiteboard across Lake Pontchartrain in an attempt to raise optimistic awareness and motivate individuals, groups, organizations, and companies to financially contribute to my fundraising efforts this Spring. As a participant in the Leukemia Cup Regatta, this is an opportunity for me to create awareness, attain a fundraising goal, conquer a lake, and support The Leukemia & Lymphoma Society.

I am promoting and fundraising in honor of my father, Terry Stuckey. In the fall of 1995, he was diagnosed with Acute Myeloid Leukemia. I witnessed my dad courageously battle this devastating disease for months at a time, until Leukemia won by attrition late in the summer of 1997. He was 43 years old. His body gave up, however, he never let go of his charismatic spirit.

The success of this kiteboarding crossing will ultimately be dependent on the attainment of this financial goal as well as timely weather conditions that produce a successful ride. March is an optimal month to complete this journey.

Therefore, the kiteboarding crossing is not restricted to the race weekends and will be supported by a chase boat for the duration of the trip across Lake Pontchartrain. The Lake Pontchartrain crossing will begin at Fontainebleau State Park and upon successful completion, conclude at either: Bonnabel Boat Launch or Southern Yacht Club.

In March, the announcment to begin the kiteboarding crossing will start with a 72 hour watch, 48 hour watch, 24 hour warning and a TBD decision the morning of the crossing. Again, changing weather conditions dictate the day of the kiteboarding crossing.

The Leukemia & Lymphoma Society is the world’s largest voluntary health organization dedicated to funding blood cancer research and providing education and patient services. Today, more than 823,000 Americans are battling blood cancers. Quick facts about Acute Myelogenous Leukemia (AML) (as stated from LLS website):

"About 13,290 Americans are expected to be diagnosed with AML in 2008. The chance of getting AML increases with age. However, children and adults of any age can develop AML. 1 in 5 children with Leukemia has AML. The goal of treatment for AML is to bring about a remission or to cure the disease.

The number of patients with AML who enter remission, stay in remission for years or are cured, has increased significantly over the past 30 years.

AML starts with a change to the single cell in the bone marrow. With AML, the Leukemia cells are referred to as blast cells. Medical researchers are working to better understand the cell changes that lead to AML."

If not detected quickly, this cancer attacks white blood cells with dramatic ferocity. The body becomes weak, flu like symptoms persist, and the immune system deteriorates. Sadly enough in 2009, AML is considered, "...a potentially curable disease; but only a minority of patients are cured with current therapy."

Please make a donation to support my participation in the 2009 Leukemia Cup Regatta. By doing so, we’ll both be supporting researchers and helping save lives.

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