10 years ago, two little girls had a dream to raise $1 million for ASK Childhood Cancer Foundation. 10 years of hard work and dedication later, they are a 1/3 of their way towards that goal!
“Mackenzie has never known life without cancer,” explains Victoria Levi, co-founder of the Fredericksburg ASK Golf Tournament. When Mackenzie was 21 months old, she was diagnosed with Medulloblastoma, a brain tumor at the base of her brain. She underwent 2 surgeries and 7 months of chemo down at VCU before being declared ‘cancer free’. But that didn’t stop the visits to the clinic and the follow up testing.
Every few months, she would have to have blood work and MRIs to look for tumor recurrence, so it seemed like she spent a lot of time down at the hospital. But instead of being afraid of it, Mackenzie made it a playground and everyone there was her friend. So much so that the Levi family started attending ASK social events to connect with clinic staff and other cancer families they had befriended at the hospital.
“We were helped so much by the community and our friends and by ASK during and after Mackenzie’s treatment," reflects Victoria.
Covid threatened to cancel the 2020 tournament, but faithful followers remained loyal and were open to any changes that needed to happen to make it a safe event. “Things like the dinner and raffles didn’t matter to them”, Victoria says. “They just wanted to play and raise money for the kids, so we adapted to the situation, and made some changes that allowed us to social distance”. Instead of raffle gift baskets, the tournament gave out gift cards, and provided pre-packaged snacks instead of dinner. “Everyone embraced the changes because we knew we were continuing the tradition of raising money for children with cancer in our community.”