Cancer Care Cup
Annual Golf Fundraiser Provides Financial Support to Cancer Patients
One local couple learned firsthand how cancer impacts not just your health but your finances. The Terrils were hit with cancer before they were even married. Danny and Gina met at a golf outing and started dating. Shortly thereafter, Danny was diagnosed with pancreatic cancer. The next two years were a blur for the couple as Danny endured chemo, and Gina stayed right by his side, many of those nights spent in a not so accommodating bedside chair.
By the grace of God and the expert care from the doctors and nurses at IU Health, Danny beat cancer and joined the ranks of the survivors. It was a defining moment — a moment in which the couple vowed to give back by helping other cancer patients and their families.
The Terrils married in 2014 and never forgot their vow to pay it forward.
“We were blessed in so many ways,” Danny says. “I lived close to the hospital, I had a job in which I could rely on several colleagues to pick up the slack during my treatments, and we had family close by.”
Danny and Gina began to meet countless other patients who drive in from out of town, spend money on gas and lodging, some had babysitting expenses and others had a tough time affording their medications.
They did some digging and discovered that IU Health didn’t have a patient assistance fund. The Terrils knew many of the patients so desperately needed the financial assistance, so they began contemplating a fundraiser. As the ideas brewed in their heads, they fell back on a common love: golf. With that, they approached the Director of Philanthropy at IU Hospital North and presented their idea for the Cancer Care Cup with a tee off dinner held the night before the golf tournament.
All the pieces quickly fell into place.
“We’ve been blessed by having so many people who want to help in so many ways. We truly have a great team,” Gina says.
The first annual Cancer Care Cup was held August 20-21, 2017, at the Bridgewater Club in Westfield, and it was a huge success. The event raised $40,000, much of which came from 67 auction items, and all of it went towards patient and family financial needs. The money can be used to pay for rent, a car payment, food, gas cards and so much more.
“I’m here to be a blessing to other survivors,” Gina says. “You go through a life-threatening situation and survive it, and you realize you have to do something. This is our way of giving back. It’s the right thing to do.”
The Terrils also give back by visiting and spending time with cancer patients, in a world where nearly everyone’s life has been touched by cancer. Gina’s father was stricken with cancer twice, eventually losing his battle.
Then, unexpectedly, Gina’s nephew was diagnosed with melanoma. After being evaluated, doctors discovered he had over 50 metastases, and he was given a grim prognosis, with possibly only a few weeks to live. His family suggested he try IU Health, and Danny’s oncologist, Dr. Jennifer Morgan, referred him to a melanoma specialist at the IU Simon Cancer Center. In great hands, Gina’s nephew began a strong chemo regimen and slowly began to beat the disease. Gina’s nephew is now cancer free.
Spreading the message of hope is part of the Terrils’ mission.
“I have had nothing but wonderful experiences at IU Health,” Danny says. “Everyone on staff has been professional, compassionate and they go above and beyond to help.”
Spreading the message of hope will be a major focus of the second annual Cancer Care Cup. This year’s event will run much like last year’s event with a Tee Off Dinner on Sunday August 19, and the tourney Monday, August 20. But this year’s Tee Off Dinner will be slightly different from last year’s.
While last year’s dinner featured cancer survivor Paul Page as a keynote speaker, there will be no celebrity keynote speaker this year. The President of IU Health will be unveiling the plans for its new 88,000 square foot cancer pavilion on the North campus in Carmel.
Right now, the funds raised go to patients strictly at IU Health North, but, in time, if the fundraising efforts grow, that may change.
“This year, at the Tee Off Dinner, we’ll hear many more testimonies from patients and social workers,” Danny says. “We want to show people there’s so much good left in the world, and you can see it 100 percent in this event.”
The Terrils and their team have set a goal to match last year’s amount of $40,000, but they’re hoping to top it.
“We raised a lot of money through the auction items like lunch for two at Tilly’s Tea Room and a Caribbean vacation. But the big hit was the motorcycle,” Gina says.
Last year, Danny and some colleagues entered a drawing just for fun hoping to win a Harley Davidson motorcycle. To everyone’s surprise, Danny and his colleagues won the drawing, and they decided to donate the Harley to the Cancer Care Cup auction.
“We got over $10,000 for the bike,” Danny says. “We’d love to have an item like that for this year. We welcome any offers of donations.”
Cancer Care Cup needs your donations and your support. Visit cancercarecup.com to register for the Tee Off Dinner and the tournament. Tickets to the dinner are $75 each, and each foursome for the golf tourney is $1,000. If you can’t make the event, you can donate through various sponsorship levels. No amount of donation is too small.
“Remember, just $5 pays for someone’s breakfast. It all counts,” Gina says.
“We know it takes a lot to commit to a Sunday night dinner and Monday morning golf outing, but it says a lot about who you are if you show up,” Danny adds. “Remember, no one fights alone.”