A Tampa Bay Newswire press release announced, “Paddle Against Cancer, a fundraiser created by cancer survivor Gene Evans, will hold its fourth-annual event benefiting Moffitt Cancer Center on Saturday, May 24.” Mr. Evans, a stage 4 kidney cancer survivor, expects more than 150 stand-up paddleboarders. Besides raising funds for the Moffitt Cancer Center in Tampa, Florida, the event aims to promote the benefits of a healthy and active lifestyle.
Gene Evans, a senior vice president at Clearwater-based USAmeriBank, created the paddleboarding event because of his desire to give back to Moffitt and support other cancer survivors. Last year’s Paddle Against Cancer, according to the press release, “Raised $31,000, bringing the total raised for the cause to $70,000. Evans is determined to surpass $100,000 in total donations to Moffitt with this year’s event.”
The event is free to the public. Participants have the options of paddling a 3-mile and 7-mile course. The event begins at 9:30 a.m., Saturday morning at The Club at Treasure Island, 400 Treasure Island Causeway. Following the paddle, there will be a poolside party with giveaways, paddleboard demonstrations, cancer survivor stories and a live band.
Mr. Evans is emphatic about his support of the Moffitt Cancer Center. “Moffitt is an amazing place where they work hard to save lives like mine every day. I am very excited for us to reach the $100,000 mark in donations so they can continue to help patients the way they helped me”
Mr. Evans’ five-year battle with cancer is truly an exceptional story. He was diagnosed with stage 4 kidney cancer in May 2009. “In stage 4 kidney cancer, the cancer spreads outside the kidneys to multiple lymph nodes or distant parts of the body, such as the bones, brain or lungs.”
According to the National Cancer Institute, “The five-year survival rate for stage 4 kidney cancer is only eight percent, Evans, however, recently celebrated three years of clear scans and attributes his successful fight against cancer to his positive attitude and active lifestyle.”
During the course of his treatment, “Mr. Evans recovered from four surgeries – including two to remove tumors from his kidneys and his spine.” According to Dr. Frank Vrionis, chief of neurosurgery at Moffitt, “Gene’s active lifestyle is an inspiration to other cancer survivors. We are grateful for his support towards our research here at Moffitt.”