On Friday night, I was honored with the Jerry Nicholson Award by ALSAC and St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital. The award is given to young person, usually a St. Jude patient, for extraordinary work in fundraising and raising awareness for St. Jude. This year was the 60th anniversary of ALSAC, and I received the award at a gala attended by everyone from Marlo and Tony Thomas to business executives from huge companies who donate millions to St. Jude, to current patients and their families. It was a night I will NEVER forget! After my acceptance speech, I was invited to be on the Board of St. Jude (I need to get a little older!) and I was called “the next Marlo Thomas.” But the most meaningful comment was from a mom who lost her daughter to cancer and said she would have wanted to raise her daughter to be just like me. That made my mom cry, and I couldn’t believe how nice it was.
Below is my speech. I hope you’ll listen to the whole thing, through the first standing ovation. What a great audience! I am so, so thankful for this incredible honor and opportunity!
This is a photo of me on stage with some of amazing St. Jude patients (and Danny Thomas’s son, Tony, on the right). It was such an honor to meet the patients and share the stage with them. They are the true heroes and fighters!
I also got to tour St. Jude and took lots of pictures of me juggling around the amazing hospital grounds. Here are just a few.
Finally, I got to be on the news in Memphis! It’s always a great way to spread the word about St. Jude and Juggling for Jude. Here’s the link to the story on the NBC affiliate there. I hope you like it!
Thank you for your support, always. Now more than ever, St. Jude needs our help. 1 in 5 children in America who are diagnosed with cancer still don’t survive. And those statistics are far worse in other countries.
Please consider donating. Every dollar helps save the life of a child with cancer and help find a cure forever.