In its ninth iteration of the Strike Out Cancer weekend, Notre Dame Softball will hold an awareness day on Saturday, April 18 to recognize those suffering from pediatric cancer and their families.
On April 18, the Notre Dame Softball program invites all to join in recognizing pediatric cancer patients and their allies by wearing orange and sharing photos and videos on social media. While the usual trivia night fundraiser and three-game series will not be held due to COVID-19, the program will aim to raise awareness.
Strike Out Cancer began supporting leukemia awareness in 2011 in solidarity with Irish head coach Deanna Gumpf and her daughter, Tatum, who was diagnosed with acute lymphoblastic leukemia in the summer of 2010.
With an annual celebration officially kicked off in 2012, the proceeds directly benefit the Samantha Hickey Foundation and South Bend’s Memorial Children’s Hospital (where Tatum started her treatments) and children throughout Indiana who have been diagnosed with cancer.
While the fundraising events will not take place in 2020, those who would still like to contribute can do so at https://app.mobilecause.com/vf/Strikeout.
In previous years, Strike Out Cancer events included a trivia night fundraiser, silent auction, home run derby and awareness promotions during a Notre Dame softball series each season. Notre Dame, its opponents and fans wear the official color of leukemia awareness, orange, as a way to show support for families and children suffering from cancer.
Tatum Gumpf (left), the inspiration behind Notre Dame softball’s initiative to support pediatric cancer patients and in remission, on the field before the 2018 Strikeout Cancer doubleheader against Duke with infielder Melissa Rochford.
Projects funded by Strikeout Cancer since 2011
- Paid lodging for family to stay in Bloomington, Ind. while their child received radiation therapy
- Sponsored kids to go to Camp Whatchawannado, a camp for children afflicted by illness
- Sponsored “wish day” for a 20-year old with cancer (shopping, massage, spa day, and flowers)
- Purchased a therapy dog for a boy with cancer
- Sponsored “wish trip” to Florida for a 20-year old fighting cancer
- Purchased back-to-school backpacks filled with school supplies
- Purchased birthday gift cards for all children going through treatment at Memorial Hospital
- Sponsored seven kids’ Christmas presents (minimum of $250.00 per child)
- Purchased special supplies for children who have finished treatment (ornaments, t- shirts, toys, etc.)
- Sponsored a “wish trip” for a college student with leukemia
- Purchased seven iPads for the pediatric hematology and oncology clinic at South Bend’s Memorial Hospital
- Purchased a desktop computer for the pediatric hematology and oncology clinic at South Bend’s Memorial Hospital
- Currently funding two play rooms that will be added to the pediatric hematology and oncology clinic at South Bend’s Memorial Hospital