Yacht Club Event to Honor Former Commodore, Raise Funds for Cancer Society
Joe Kocot was a born leader. People gravitated to him for motivation and inspiration. He was always upbeat and often had a funny story to share, one that not only made you laugh but also taught a life lesson.
“He was a motivator,” recalls his wife, Lisa. “He was the go-to guy. He always had the answers.”
It came as a surprise, then, when Joe was diagnosed with leukemia in 2003. Ever positive, Joe was determined to fight and win.
“His positive outlook on life and his situation was an inspiration to all who knew him,” Lisa said. “Ironically, he was the one we all looked up to for strength.”
Joe remained active throughout his cancer treatments, opening a car lot on Pendleton Pike (Easy Guy Auto) and taking on the role of Commodore at the Indianapolis Yacht Club in 2005.
“He liked a challenge,” says Lisa, adding that Joe volunteered his time at the Yacht Club as a way of giving back to the community. “He liked the water, and he liked family. He liked a place where we could spend time together.”
Joe lost his battle with cancer in March of 2007, leaving his wife and two lovely girls, Caroline and Clarice, who miss their dad’s stories and his incredible cooking.
“Every time I’d come downstairs, there was a different smell,” remembers Clarice, 9, who especially liked her dad’s homemade potato chips and mozzarella sticks.
Although it has been tough, the Kocots are thankful for the support of their neighbors, Lawrence Township Schools, Outlook Christian Church and the Indianapolis Yacht Club.
Now their Yacht Club “family” is joining together and inviting the community to engage in a Night to Remember — a special night to honor all of those who have lost the battle with cancer.
The September 12 event will mix festival-like fun with heartwarming tributes, all to benefit the American Cancer Society. The night will be capped off with a luminary ceremony where everyone will be invited to honor loved ones who have been touched by cancer.
“Our hope in putting on this event is to honor Joe Kocot and those who were touched by his life, as well as give all members of the community the chance to participate in an event where we come together and fight back against cancer,” said Jenny Boling of the American Cancer Society. “ We are striving to bring people together with a common bond and for a common cause. Unfortunately, too many people are touched by cancer, and this event will give everyone a chance to share in the celebration of cancer survivors, and remembrance of those who have lost their battle.”
A Night to Remember will be held at the Indianapolis Yacht Club from 5:30-8:30 p.m. on Saturday, Sept. 12. Advance tickets are $20 for adults and $15 for children and include a dinner buffet. Please call Yacht Club Manager Bill Lorch at (317) 335-2582 for more information.
“This is a way to come together to fight back and give back,” Boling said. “All are encouraged to attend!”