Where can you find 550 guests gathered on a Friday evening wearing everything from medical scrubs, to camouflage, to flapper costumes all coming together for the same reason… to raise much needed funds for childhood cancer research? No where other than Savannah’s Catie’s Gathering Event benefiting CURE Childhood Cancer!
Savannah showed up in a big way on Friday, February 7th at the Kehoe Ironworks building overlooking the river downtown. Coastal Electrics attended as the event’s Title Sponsor. In addition, many other sponsors, in-kind donors, hospital staff, patient parents, volunteers, table hostesses, and guests were in attendance. Everyone enjoyed a cocktail hour while perusing silent auction items and listening to live music provided by local band, Tell Scarlet. Special thanks to Carlson’s Premier Events for helping make the room look beautiful.
The table hostesses chose a theme or color scheme and created elaborate tablescapes and centerpieces. The hostesses certainly weren’t shy on creativity when they came up with themes like When Life Gives You Lemons, Speakeasy, Fight Hard, Do you Wanna find a CURE (complete with Frozen’s Olaf the Snowman), and a Top Gun tribute; The Need For a CURE.
WSAV reporter, Andrew Davis, served as the nights emcee and Silk Road Catering provided guests with a delicious meal. While it was served, they listened to Jenny Wilkins, Co-Founder of Catie’s Fund, interview three Savannah teens: Seth Rousch, Lauren Stephens, and Lily Stuckey. The teens shared the trials of their cancer journies and what’s been happening in their lives over the past twelve months. Each shared some very difficult stories.
- When Seth’s disease did not reach remission, he spent months away from home undergoing Car T Cell Therapy and eventually a bone marrow transplant.
- Lauren’s relapsed stage-4 neuroblastoma didn’t respond to treatment until after she received genetic testing through Precision Medicine and began a clinical trial drug that targeted her genetic mutation. Managing life and treatment as a new college freshman with cancer was difficult. Lauren experienced a setback in her treatment, but she has a positive outlook for the future.
- Lily’s leukemia treatment has not been easy but meeting a friend with the same diagnosis made cancer more tolerable. Lily shared how her friend, Kylie Shiell, who sat with her at the same event in 2019, passed away a few months earlier.
“Kylie did all her big things in life on the 13th of month,” Lily bravely said. “She was born on September 13, diagnosed with leukemia on April 13, and on November 13, 2019, I lost my cancer bestie.”
There wasn’t a dry eye in the house when a tribute video to Kylie was played and Lily presented a special wooden angel that she painted to Kylie’s mother, Ashley, as a gift.
After an exciting live auction with auctioneer, Kenny Williams, guests left with full bellies and full hearts knowing that Savannah once again rallied together to fund better treatments for the community’s youngest cancer fighters.
“One of my favorite parts of the evening was when Jenny began talking with 18-year-old Lauren,” guest Katie Kelley wrote. “She explained how the treatment that finally worked for Lauren, was a result of the Precision Medicine Program that CURE is funding through events like this!”
Thank you, Savannah, for coming together once again. Everyone did their part to raise $140,000 to improve treatment for children with cancer. We can’t wait until 2021!