ROCHESTER, N.Y. and BUFFALO, N.Y. -- The University at Buffalo,
Roswell Park Cancer Institute and Melissa's Living Legacy Teen
Cancer Foundation will sponsor a "Duel in the Pool" competition at
4 p.m. Saturday, April 28, in UB's Alumni Arena Natatorium to raise
funds for Teens Living with Cancer in Rochester and Buffalo.
Seven-time Tour de France winner Lance Armstrong has accepted a
challenge issued by Orchard Park native, former UB student, and
triathlon coach Mary Eggers to battle it out in a 50-meter
kickboard sprint in the pool prior to his scheduled UB
Distinguished Speakers Series lecture at 8 p.m.
Eggers, a fitness coach working with the Teens Living with
Cancer (TLC) program, issued her challenge to Armstrong via Twitter
upon learning of Lance's speech at UB. She intended to draw
attention to the organization's mission and its TLC Fit
Proceeds from this event will benefit LIVESTRONG and the Teens
Living with Cancer program in Rochester and soon-to-be established
chapter in Buffalo at Roswell Park -- a new venture being made
possible due to this collaboration and the "Duel in the Pool"
Attendance at the "Duel in the Pool" will be by invitation only
and closed to the public and media. Video footage and photographs
from the private event will be provided to media upon request at
the evening lecture.
The audience for the event will be teen cancer patients from
both Roswell Park and Teens Living with Cancer in Rochester, making
it the first opportunity for both current and future members of the
support group to meet and share their experiences. The videotaped
race results and behind-the-scenes footage will be presented during
Armstrong's 8 p.m. public lecture.
"Teens who are facing cancer deserve access to a wide range of
unique and age-specific support services," said Lynda Kwon Beaupin,
MD, coordinator of Roswell Park's Adolescent and Young Adult (AYA)
Program. "Thanks to Mary Eggers and Lance Armstrong, the "Duel in
the Pool" will allow Teens Living with Cancer to expand its reach
to both Buffalo and Rochester, providing more opportunities for
teens to seek these important services and find support from their
Teens Living with Cancer is the peer-support program of
Melissa's Living Legacy Teen Cancer Foundation. Its mission is to
provide resources and support that enhance the quality of life for
teens with cancer. Inspired by Melissa Marie Sengbusch who died in
June, 2000 at age 19, the foundation has grown from a grassroots
organization to an internationally known and respected provider of
age-appropriate resources for teens with cancer. Since its
beginning, the organization has supported thousands of teens and
their families around the globe.
"We share a vision with Lance Armstrong in helping cancer
survivors live their best lives," said Lauren Spiker, Melissa's mom
and executive director of Melissa's Living Legacy Teen Cancer
Foundation. "The spirit of this event has Melissa written all over
Eggers has had a long triathlon career during which she has set
several amateur course records, raced in elite categories and
qualified for the Hawaii Ironman three times. She is an USAT All
American, multi-sport coach, yoga instructor and registered nurse.
More information about Mary can be found at http://www.ironmomma.com.
The fundraising goal set by LIVESTRONG and TLC is $100,000, of
which 100 percent will benefit both organizations. To find out more
about the "Duel in the Pool" and how to donate, visit http://www.teenslivingwithcancer.org.
Tickets to the Armstrong lecture -- which will include the "Duel
in the Pool" video -- are available through the Alumni Arena Ticket
Office, which is open from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m., Monday through Friday,
and Ticketmaster. For more information, visit http://www.specialevents.buffalo.edu.
Lauren Spiker, TLC, Executive Director
Kerry Jones, RPCI, Sr. Communications Coordinator
John Della Contrada, UB, Asst. VP for Media Relations