DONATION LINK: St. Jude Children's Research Hospital - BOSTON MARATHON
Kevin Pittshas raised
of US$10,000 target
of target raised
Fundraising ended on
15 May 2023
This project is closed for donations.
* Total includes US$11,155 raised from sources outside GivenGain.
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My Story
I'm extremely blessed to have been selected as a St. Jude Hero for the 2023 Boston Marathon and to have the chance to fundraise for such an amazing organization to honor the life of Emily Stephens. As a teacher, coach, and school administrator, it has always been my goal to hopefully impact and inspire students to go beyond what they think is possible and achieve extraordinary tasks. In this case, it was the student and her family that provided the inspiration for me to challenge myself to accomplish goals that seemed unattainable. Emily's story is simply nothing less than courageous!

Emily was born in 1994 and was diagnosed with brain cancer at the age of 4. She was subjected to cancer treatments throughout her childhood and even through college. I moved to China Spring in 2007 and was fortunate to meet the Stephens family, but was unaware of what they had been dealing with for the past nine years. It was brought to my attention that Emily was receiving treatments for brain cancer while she was in high school and I couldn't believe it because of all of the things she had accomplished and everything she was involved in. Here's a list of what this young lady did while being a student at China Spring High School:
1. Valedictorian CSHS 2012 - YES, graduated first in her class while being treated for brain cancer.
2. Captain of the CS Electric Blues Dance team
3. Editor of the CSHS Yearbook
4. President of the Waco Chapter of the National Charity League
5. Accepted to the University of Texas at Austin's McCombs School of Business - which she graduated from with High Honors.

In 2013, her mother - Brenda - created a non-profit aimed at serving less fortunate students/families in our community called China Spring Cares. Every year before school starts and at Christmas, over 100 students/families benefit from this program that provides clothing, food, and pretty much anything that is brought to their attention. It's simply amazing what the Stephen's family has given to our community!

Emily's cancer returned during her sophomore year at UT and she was accepted to participate in an experimental treatment at St. Jude. This procedure provided her and her family an additional 5 years of life and the opportunity to become part of the St. Jude Family. When visiting with Brenda over the years, she always speaks with such passion and appreciation for everything St. Jude did for her wonderful daughter and family. In January 2018, Emily passed away from her long, hard fought battle with cancer and she never once backed down or let it stop her from meeting the goals she set for herself. Although Emily's life was cut short, she packed a ton of extraordinary accomplishments into the time she was given. It is simply astonishing that during all these difficult times, she and her family chose not to give up or give in - just to give more!

As you can see, this young lady and her family are the personification of what it means to be courageous and truly provide something positive in a world that seems to have lost its way. This is why I'm so honored to be chosen to be a St. Jude Hero and to honor the memory of Emily Stephens.

Article about Emily:

Benefiting Charities

St. Jude Children's Research Hospital

St. Jude Children's Research Hospital

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The Event

127th Boston Marathon

127th Boston Marathon

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Kevin Pitts
By Kevin Pitts
St. Jude Children's Research Hospital
This project is closed for donations.