My dear friend and beloved EC employee, Sam, has always illustrated the highest form of bravery and strength . This year, on the first anniversary of her kicking cancer’s butt, Sam brought the Hermosa Beach community together to raise awareness to the fight against breast cancer and coincidentally to celebrate her one year being cancer free. Along side her beautiful family and a generous group of skateboarders dressed in pink, the community came together and demonstrated what fundraising is all about. Read on for her account of the day!
April 29th was our 10th annual Sk8 for the Schools. My son, Sebastian “Seabass,” started the fundraiser as a way to giveback to the schools and raise money for the Hermosa Beach Education Foundation. He overheard my husband and I discussing the funding crisis at his small school as a Kindergartner, and decided he’d do fancy tricks on his skateboard and ask for donations to help raise money.
Each year we host this fundraiser building awareness for the cause, and raising money for our community schools. Last year, Sk8 for the Schools raised more than $8,000 and has raised over $35,000 to date. This year, Seabass has a new school. He’s grown out of the Hermosa Beach City School District and attends high school at Loyola High School. He passed the torch to his younger brother, Julian, a fifth grader at Hermosa Valley. Julian has grown up watching his brother skate, has helped with the event over the years, and is now ready to keep the family tradition alive. If the truth be told, he’s hoping to raise more money than his brother.
Last year the event took on an extra special meaning, as I was diagnosed with stage 2 breast cancer during a routine mammogram. Ironically the date of our event was scheduled for the exact same day as my double mastectomy. We quickly held the event 5 days before my surgery, and the event took on a pink hue, to bring awareness to breast cancer. We wanted to encourage all women to conduct self checks and schedule their regular mammograms. The boys skated in pink, we served pink lemonade, and the whole community showed up in pink to support our family, and this annual community event.
This year the boys again skated in pink to celebrate my one year anniversary of being CANCER FREE, and again to remind people to schedule their regular check ups. The event is open to all kids who want to skate with my boys. They help train little ones and perform skate tricks with the bigger, more advanced kids. It’s all about getting together as a community, to celebrate the youth in Hermosa Beach, and support the local schools. We have raised over $35,000 for our local schools, and we have no plans to stop this annual event.
My husband and I feel that community service with our children is important for so many reasons. It feels good for starters. The satisfaction and pride that comes from hosting this event year after year, cannot be taught in a classroom, and we hope to foster a civic responsibility in our boys for years to come. I encourage everyone to do something for others this summer. You don’t have to host an annual fundraiser to give back… but you could help out at a hospital, pick up litter at a park, make treats for a local senior home or donate some old toys to a shelter, to name a few. To quote the great Dr. Seuss, “Unless someone like you cares a whole awful lot, nothing is going to get better. It’s not.”