The Blackberry Smoke Fund

The purpose of the Blackberry Smoke Fund is to provide funding for CURE’s research initiatives and patient and family support.

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Blackberry Smoke is an iconic Southern rock band from Atlanta, formed in 2001 by Charlie Starr, Paul Jackson, and Smyrna natives Brit and Richard Turner. In December 2009, Brit and Shannon Turner’s only child, Lana, was diagnosed with Stage 4 neuroblastoma, a rare form of cancer that develops from nerve tissue. Only 3 at the time, tumors had taken over 97 percent of her body. On tour in Europe when Shannon called with the terrible news, Brit immediately left the tour and came home to be by Lana and Shannon’s side, where he stayed while Lana bravely fought the disease.

Lana's Story

“My daughter was very sick,” says Brit. “While staying at the hospital, my wife and I watched families come and go. We watched many children die, and those unforgettable moments shattered us both deeply. No matter what horrible situation is thrown at you, someone always has it worse. As a band, we have always performed at charity shows and try to lend a hand anytime we were able to. But it wasn’t until Lana was diagnosed that I felt it from the other side. This was the first time I felt like I was completely helpless and that I couldn’t provide – I didn’t know what to do.”

Thankfully, Lana survived and, today at age 13 is doing great.

“My daughter was very sick,” says Brit. “While staying at the hospital, my wife and I watched families come and go. We watched many children die, and those unforgettable moments shattered us both deeply. No matter what horrible situation is thrown at you, someone always has it worse. As a band, we have always performed at charity shows and try to lend a hand anytime we were able to. But it wasn’t until Lana was diagnosed that I felt it from the other side. This was the first time I felt like I was completely helpless and that I couldn’t provide – I didn’t know what to do.”

Thankfully, Lana survived and, today at age 13 is doing great.

“I learned a lot from this experience,” Brit shares. “Life is 10 percent what is thrown at you and 90 percent how you are able to react. A lot of people are responsible for helping us react. They continue to help by purchasing Blackberry Smoke meet and greet packages. We use that money to donate to research because all children deserve the chance to grow up and live life like Lana is doing.”

Since 2011, Blackberry Smoke has donated more than $400,000 to childhood cancer organizations. The money raised is largely a result of meet and greet packages purchased by fans. The band also hosted the  Blackberry Smoke Ride for CURE in 2019 and plan to make it an annual event.

The Blackberry Smoke Fund in Action

David Uhl Print Giveaway

Make a donation to the Blackberry Smoke Fund to be eligible to win this framed print, “Passing the Torch” by David Uhl.

Titled “Passing the Torch”, this piece is a generational tribute to fathers and sons and their involvement in two great American pastimes: motorcycling and baseball. It features long-time CURE supporter, Tom Glavine and his son, Kienan. David was approached by Hellbender Harley-Davidson located in Atlanta GA. They were building a new store, Tomahawk Harley-Davidson, at the new Atlanta Braves ballpark and thought the combination would make a unique painting. Tom and Kienan were kind enough to serve as David’s models. David also thought the Warren Spahn statue at the ballpark would really add to the piece. Ironically, Tom Glavine indirectly patterned his pitching career after that of Warren Spahn. The H-D with sidecar was graciously loaned by Dale Walksler and the Wheels Through Time Museum in Maggie Valley, NC.

This framed print is signed by both Tom Glavine and David Uhl and is being offered as a giveaway to support the Blackberry Smoke Fund. Anyone who makes a donation to the fund by midnight on July 3, 2021 will be eligible for the drawing.

See more of David Uhl’s work at uhlstudios.com.