When the island of Puerto Rico was thrashed by Hurricane Maria in 2017, nearly 3,000 people lost their lives and there was some $90 billion in property damage. Many people went months without electricity.
Amid such suffering, the volunteers who stage an annual golf tournament benefitting St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital could have canceled the fundraiser. But their devotion shone through, even in those dark days.
Tournament organizers kept sponsors on board, dealt with suppliers and found a new location for the post-tournament ceremony since the regular site was damaged. And so the 2018 St. Jude Fore the Kids golf tournament was played as scheduled — raising $183,000 and beating its goal by more than $50,000.
Those volunteers remained determined to help St. Jude because of how St. Jude helps the children of Puerto Rico — children like Yamila, who persevered through relapses and two bone marrow transplants during treatment for acute lymphoblastic leukemia. Disease didn’t dim her smile or her spirit.
“When I look into Yamila’s eyes, I see something wonderful, something full of life,” said her dad, Rafael. “I see … strength.”
Just like Puerto Rico.