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Gala Raises $1.569 Million for Cancer Frontier Fund

Jason Merrill

Kareem Abdul-Jabbar featured here with Timothy Eberlein, MD, Siteman Cancer director and Rich Liekweg, president of Barnes-Jewish Hospital and Barnes-Jewish Hospital West County.

May 17, 2010 – More than 500 people gathered to raise $1.569 million at the Barnes-Jewish Hospital Foundation’s illumination10 gala on Saturday, May 15, at the Chase Park Plaza. All proceeds will benefit the Cancer Frontier Fund at the Alvin J. Siteman Cancer Center at Barnes-Jewish and Washington University School of Medicine. Edward Jones was the presenting sponsor.

“Siteman is a world leader in cutting-edge cancer treatment and research, and we were honored to lead such an exciting event that will help Siteman continue to score victories against cancer,” say gala co-chairs Stacey and Jim Weddle.

The NBA’s all-time leading scorer and Hall of Famer Kareem Abdul-Jabbar hosted the gala. It  was the first event in which Abdul-Jabbar established himself as a spokesperson in the fight against cancer. He announced his diagnosis of chronic myeloid leukemia in 2009.

"We thank Kareem Abdul-Jabbar for sharing his heartfelt cancer story and helping the Barnes-Jewish Hospital Foundation raise over $1.5 million during his visit," says Rich Liekweg, president of Barnes-Jewish Hospital and Barnes-Jewish Hospital West County.

All proceeds benefit the Barnes-Jewish Hospital Foundation’s Cancer Frontier Fund, an initiative spearheaded by Amy and Bill Koman to change cancer care around the world by accelerating the pace of discoveries made at Siteman.

“The support we received at illumination10 will enable us to continue developing more accurate diagnoses and more targeted therapies and work on new treatments that may prevent the disease entirely,” says Siteman director Timothy Eberlein, MD.

Since 1999, illumination has generated millions of dollars to support Siteman – the only National Cancer Institute-designated Comprehensive Cancer Center within 240 miles of St. Louis.