Gary Jobson will hopefully be remembered for giving hope to Leukemia and Lymphoma-afflicted patients with the Leukemia Cup – a regatta series that has raised millions of dollars to directly fund research that helps cancer patients live longer. There’s no cure yet, but it’s not a death sentence be any means, in part thanks to Gary and the tens of thousands of sailors and their friends that have thrown a few bucks at this horrible disease. SA’s NorCal SuperChick Paige Brooks tells us why she’s sailing it next month.
I’ve lost two friends to cancer this year. Both too young. Two other skippers whom I’ve sailed with for years have recently been diagnosed and treated for cancer. And early this year I held another friend’s hand while she was infused with chemotherapy drugs.
Among my friends, these close encounters with cancer are just the tip of the iceberg.
It’s not easy.
It’s among us, and it’s a part of our lives. This year, it was just too much for me not to do something. As I stood by Matt Carter’s family the night he passed away two weeks ago, I said I would sail for him in the Leukemia Cup. He has been fighting his cancer since just after I met him in 2002. My sailing friend from South Florida, Catherine Connelly (mainsheetgirl –ed), had a shorter fight. She died at age 43 in early April after a diagnosis last fall.
All of us have had cancer of some sort touch our lives, take lives from us. Sometimes we can do something, we all wish we could to more. I certainly do.
On October 21st, I’m going to sail for the spirit of these two, and for the hope of funding continued and better research to treat and cure cancer.
I was given the opportunity to crew on a remarkable boat, with a remarkable team. Dorade is the yacht, a 52′ boat conceived and built by a 21 year old Olin Stephens in 1929. In her day, she handily won races across oceans. Matt Brooks and Pam Levy have recently reinvigorated Dorade’s spirit in a careful renovation of the boat and plan to race her again in those same races. She’s already done the Newport – Bermuda – my mother and I wistfully watched her start from the shoreline – and they plan to do more including a Transpac (LA to Hawaii) and a Transat (NY to England). This month, the 83 year old Dorade is making her first appearance in San Francisco since the 1960s. For her racing re-debut here, she’ll be sailing with an all women crew, skippered by JJ Fetter. I am honored to have been invited to join them.
And now for the ask. It takes more than just warm hugs and plates of lasagna to help support those with cancer and even more those who’ve not yet been diagnosed. I’ve set a high bar, but it’s been years since I’ve done this sort of thing. I hope you’ll support this lofty cause, with whatever amount will work for you. Be it $5 or $500, it will be welcome and appreciated.
Donate here, and thank you – from me, and everyone you might save.