Students raised more than $10,000 to help people battling cancer in the 13th annual Pretty in Pink event Saturday, Jan. 14 at High Point Regional High School.
Chris Dexter, High Point’s athletic director, said $7,500 had been given out before the event, which featured games between the junior varsity and varsity girls teams from High Point and Wallkill Valley Regional High School. The total raised was not available as of Jan. 17.
Wallkill Valley girls basketball coach Earl Hornyak introduced his sister Diane Redner of Lake Wallkill in Vernon during a break in the varsity game. She has breast cancer and received money raised through the event to help with medical and other expenses.
Other funds went to Robyn Anderson, mother of Erin, a player on the Wallkill Valley team.
Dexter said he expected another $3,000 to go to other local residents with cancer.
The money came from sponsors and sales of T-shirts, concessions and tickets, which were $5 each.
In past years, the event raised as much as $25,000 for cancer patients. This year, it was organized in about a month, he said.
Hornyak recalled his experience with prostate cancer when pointing out how widespread the disease has been in his family and among friends.
“The list just goes on and on and on. ... For High Point to hold this event, I think it’s very special,” he said.
“It’s very difficult when that doctor says to you those words, ‘You have cancer.‘ It’s tough, it’s real tough. ...
“That’s when the fight starts.”
He told those now battling cancer and their family and friends, “Don’t give up, don’t ever give up. That’s important. Rely on your family and friends ... to help you through it.
“No one fights alone,” he said, referring to a banner on the wall. “That’s so true, so true.”
During another break in the game, team members handed flowers to cancer survivors and those with cancer who were invited onto the court.
Dexter said he considers Pretty in Pink the best event of the school year because the community comes together even during tough economic times to help others.
The field hockey and girls soccer teams held similar, smaller events to raise funds for those with cancer during the fall.