I received an email, which read (in part):
A month ago, former Atlanta Braves pitcher Tom Glavine was inducted into the baseball Hall of Fame.
On Sept. 8, Glavine will enter a hall of fame of an entirely different sort – one that honors people who have made a difference in the fight against childhood cancer.
Glavine and his wife, Chris, will receive Aflac’s Duckprints Award for their longtime support of Atlanta-based CURE Childhood Cancer, which funds research and supports patients and their families. The Glavines have helped the organization raise $4 million since 2008.
Glavine is deeply passionate about this cause, even taking time during his Hall of Fame acceptance speech in Cooperstown, N.Y. to mention CURE Childhood Cancer and how much working with the organization has meant to him.
Within the email was an invitation to interview one of my all time favorite Braves and his wife. Unfortunately I was not able to attend the event, but my colleague Susan was happy to take my place. The remainder of this post is her account of the event, as well as some photos she would like to share. Thank you, Susan!
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The event started with a photo op at the entrance with the Aflac duck. A duck. A real live duck. I have never seen anything like that. It was so calm and let everyone sit next to it and pet it. Talk about incredible.
Ernie Johnson, Jr. emceed the event and did a great job introducing all the guests and talking about CURE. He told the story about Game 6 of the 1995 World Series when Tom Glavine asked his team for just one run and he would take care of the rest. He tied it all together by saying that when it comes to battling childhood cancer it only takes one. One act of kindness. One small gesture. One smile. Just one.
Esme and her dad spoke and told the story of her diagnosis and treatment process at the Aflac Cancer Center. There wasn’t a dry eye in the place. As of September 3rd, Esme’s scans are clear and she is cancer free. Incredible.
The Glavines gave a sweet speech and spoke about their involvement with CURE. Tom Glavine was quite humble and gave all the credit to his wife Chris for embracing this cause and simply said he’s along for the ride. My favorite part of their speech is when they mentioned the different ways they get their own kids involved and their son’s hockey teams wear the gold ribbon logo on their helmets.
Tom and Chris Glavine receiving their award
After going through Glavine’s top notch baseball statistics it was time to unveil the footprints on the wall. Ernie said, “that is what you did – this is who you are.”
After the festivities I had a chance to speak briefly with the Glavines to find out more about their involvement with CURE. There were delicious cookies involved. Duckprint cookies.
Tom and Chris Glavine
They told me they recognized how lucky they are that their own children haven’t been diagnosed and they feel strongly about helping all the families who are affected by childhood cancer. Their commitment to raising awareness is truly inspiring. We chatted for about five minutes and I was blown away by their compassion and dedication to such an important cause. I believe it truly takes just one.
Susan with Tom and Chris Glavine
Please visit CUREChildhoodCancer.com for more information about their goals and how you can help.