The Los Angeles Chargers continued their legacy of giving back to the community by hosting a Crucial Catch – Intercept Cancer Day along with the Center for Family Health and Education.
This event was made possible through a grant from the American Cancer Society, funded by the National Football League.
"We're very excited about the partnership with the NFL and the American Cancer Society," said Cesley Tafoya, Strategic Director, Regional Sports & Entertainment, West Region ACS. "Partnering with the Chargers today at this community event, we're really trying to intercept cancer and bring in the community…. Just being the new kids in town with the Chargers, what better way to kind of get your feet on the ground than to partner with ACS."
Travis Benjamin and Michael Schofield attended the event, having seen how cancer has affected their families first-hand.
"Today means a lot to me knowing that breast cancer and cancer has touched my family," Benjamin said. "My mom and my grandmother and one of my aunts (had it). Just coming out here, spreading awareness and giving people the courage to get themselves checked (is important)."
"With my family being so affected by it all, I just like to help out with any chance like this to spread awareness of any kind of cancer," added Schofield, who has had seven family members battle cancer. "I've seen the dark side of cancer, and I just want to make sure people don't have to go through that."
Seeing players whose families have been affected come out and show support on Tuesday really hit home for Tafoya.
"It really just shows the affect that cancer has had on some of these players and on some of their families," she said. "That's what we really want to touch on with these players, and really show that ACS is here for them. We're here for their families. Any way we can help them out or help their families out, we're just a call away…a hug away."
The event provided cancer education and awareness for early detection. Those who attended could sign up for free breast cancer screenings and colorectal cancer detection kits. As Schofield knows, early detection is so crucial.
"Getting screened early is a huge thing with (preventing) it, so I'm just trying to spread the word of that. Early detection is huge in cancer. If you wait too long, it could be the difference between life and death."
The Bolts' fight to intercept cancer doesn't end Tuesday as Sunday's game against the Denver Broncos will be the team's A Crucial Catch Initiative game. There will be splashes of pink all around StubHub Center. Susie Spanos, wife of Chargers Chairman of the Board Dean Spanos, is a breast cancer survivor. She will present a check to the Zeta Tau Alpha Fraternity for women in the second quarter. Players, like Schofield and one of his aunts, will accompany family members who have survived cancer onto the field for the coin toss. Fans will be asked to stand up and show pink cards with loved ones' names written on them during a commemorative salute in the second quarter.
Los Angeles Chargers host Crucial Catch – Intercept Cancer Event with the Center of Family Health & Education.