We want to thank everyone who attended, donated, and participated in every way, shape, and form to make our Gold Gala event a success. We want to thank you on behalf of not just the Paxton Andrews Foundation, but on behalf of Paxton himself, and on behalf of Bradan, one of our warriors who we fight on in his memory.
In the weeks leading up to our event, a special young man, Greg Von Rueden, joined Paxton and Bradan wherever it is that our most precious children go when they aren’t beside us any longer.
Whether you believe in a here-after where the innocents of this world play, or if you believe in the loving arms of an Almighty, or if you believe simply that if you never stop loving them that they are kept with us in every touch of sunlight and every smell and sound that reminds us of their presence; Greg numbers among the ones we call warriors.
Greg was a student at Marquette University High School, and was a volleyball player. To many, his love of the sport must seem pretty normal. What is special about this fact is the amount of attention Greg’s story received in the youth volleyball community. During their tournament at the Delta Center, players donned yellow to support him. You see, the Badger Region VollyBlog put up a post asking for everyone playing to “wear something yellow. A yellow hat. A yellow tee-shirt. Yellow pants. Yellow anything.” All in support for Greg.
Greg’s story, and his support extended far beyond that. The Catholic Herald Online named him one of 2013’s most inspirational people, there were runs in Greg’s name, and Greg was even a Green Bay Packer’s Junior Captain!
The message became a sort of movement, and that message and movement became hashtags: #Yellow4Greg and #NoOneFightsAlone
No one fights alone…
Let that settle in for a minute.
There are times when the children and the families going through their battle with cancer will shoulder the heaviest of decisions and undergo the most unforgiving of trials. And they will have to carry loads that would break a person.
And they will feel alone. A cork bobbing in the center of an eternal, bottomless, dark ocean.
Which is why we fight. Why we’re here. Why you all were there at the Gala. Because for every tear shed and fist punched into the tiles of a shower, every scream shouted into an empty room, and every call that goes to voicemail because they just don’t have the will to talk; it is up to us as people who love them, to make sure that they do not fight alone. To make sure they know they will not walk this road by themselves.
On behalf of the Paxton Andrews Foundation, in the names of Paxton and Bradan, our warriors who have gone before us; and in the names of our warriors Mabel, Andrew, and Dafne, thank you for fighting with us. We love you for it.
For Greg, and the untold other warriors and their families out there: we love you too.
You are not alone.
A special thanks to our Gold Gala sponsors:
InCheck | Swig | Bin 111 | Tim Kant Photography | Annette Durfee
MillerCoors | Ssmarty Cakes | South Milwaukee Middle School Art Club
View more photos from the Gold Gala on our Facebook page.