Volleyball teams throughout Illinois sponsor "Volley for the Cure" events to raise money for cancer research and awareness. But sometimes the battle against a dreaded disease strikes closer to home.
Host Neuqua Valley and Hinsdale South are teaming up at 6:00 p.m. on Wednesday, October 7 for a fundraiser, "Christine's Battle - Coming Together for Chris" to help defray the cost of a bone marrow transplant for Christine Federico.
Christine (Rehor) Federico was an outstanding volleyball player at Illinois State University during the early 1980s and is a member of the ISU Athletic Hall of Fame. She served as a volunteer coach at Neuqua and also coached at Sports Performance. Her daughter, Nikki, is a senior on the Neuqua Valley volleyball team.
Christine Federico has been diagnosed with Myelodysplastic Syndrome (MDS), a rare disease that affects 10,000-15,000 Americans each year and acts as an early stage of leukemia. There is no cure for the disease, but her friends and family are hoping that a bone marrow transplant will put the disease in remission.
Her present course of treatment consists of blood transfusions and chemotherapy, but a bone marrow transplant will give her the best chance for survival.
Neuqua Valley will be selling T-shirts and wristbands at the event as well as taking straight monetary donations to contribute to the Christine Federico MDS Fund. At the match, anyone who donates $5 or more will receive a signed Christine Federico mini volleyball. There will also be a raffle and a "split-the-pot."
People who cannot attend the event October 7 can go to the Great Lakes Volleyball Center from 5:00-9:00 p.m. on Sunday, October 11 for another fundraiser, the "Christine Federico Bean Bag Tournament."
The Great Lakes Center is located at 579 N. Oakhurst Drive in Aurora, just off New York Street. The entry fee is $50.00 per team (teams of 2) and the tournament will be a blind draw.
There will also be music, food and prizes, and a dunk tank featuring Sports Performance club coaches.
People who cannot make either event but would like to help can purchase personalized
livestrong bracelets by sending $5 to Robyn Horn, 547 Carriage Ridge Lane, Lemont, IL 60439. Specify size (man, woman, child) and quantity.
Whether you are a friend, a fan and somebody who just wants to lend a hand to somebody who has given so much to the volleyball community, your help is greatly needed.
For more information on how you can help, call Kelly Simon, Neuqua Valley head volleyball coach, at (630) 854-6356.