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The following is a letter to the editor of the Bainbridge Review:

Cancer benefit proves to be a huge success – On March 19 at Grace Church, over 400 people gathered to share hope.  Bill and I were so thankful that such a large circle of friends and community gathered to raise money and awareness for brain cancer research and treatment.

At last count, our donations exceeded $100,000 and were still climbing! We were astounded and so proud of everyone’s efforts to raise this much money for Dr. Jim Olson’s lab.  The energy and the love present among all those heroes at Grace that night was palpable.

Special thanks go to our speakers who spoke of hope and heroes: mountaineer Ed Viesturs, brain cancer survivor Cheryl Broyles, and Dr. Olson, pediatric oncologist/researcher, whose lab in Seattle ws the benefactor of Hannah’s Hopefull Hearts. Bill Harper of Grace Church moderated the evening’s program while John Kaminski ran the successful paddle call for donations.

We were very grateful to these local businesses and individuals who sponsored HHH, enabling us to host such a wonderful evening: caterer Sharilyn Nodsle of Seasons of Thyme Catering, Grace Church, the Wilson family, the Helm-Pitinga family, Town & Country Market, Bainbridge Bakers, My Kids’ Cookies, Pegasus Coffee, BI Taxi, cycling instructor Kathi McMahon and Island Fitness, and Connie Mears of The Bainbridge Review.

For two and a half years, since our daughter, Hannah, was diagnosed with a brain tumor, we have been deeply touched by countless acts of kindess and love towards our family.  Hannah’s Hopeful Hearts provided an even bigger way for friends and community to give in a way which will go directly to the fight against childhood cancer at Seattle Children’s Hospital and the Olson Lab.

Even though brain cancer has been our family’s worst nightmare, we are blessed to live on an island where love and compassion are alive and well, giving an 11-year old girl and her family HOPE.

With deep gratitude, Hannah, Andrew, Ryan, Adam, Alexis, Reba and Bill Hunt

The kindness and generosity of people is amazing.

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