Jessie’s Sunshine Crew held its first Trivia Night and raised $4,400 for sarcoma research in memory of Jessica Ottinger on Friday, May 31. The “Friends”-themed fundraiser took place at the Lincoln County Council on Aging. 

Sarcomas account for about one percent of all adult cancers; sarcomas are curable by surgery about 20 percent of the time, 30 percent with surgery and radiation/chemotherapy. Fifty percent of the time they are totally resistant to all of these approaches. Researchers believe that with a concentrated effort, significant breakthroughs are within reach because of the unique genetic makeup of sarcomas.

Jessica Ottinger lost her cancer battle on May 21, 2017. She once said, “People always say you are so brave or strong...being so well-loved my whole life gave me confidence to keep my head up in my fight.” 

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Robyn Potts, Rachel Hernandez, Ashley Rottler and Heather Cushing with Jessica Ottinger (far left). Photo submitted by Ashley Rottler

 

Two years ago, during the annual STL Cure Sarcoma 6K held in October, Jessica’s closest friends, who loved her dearly, started brainstorming about how they could continue to honor her and live out the passion and enthusiasm she exhibited daily. This year’s trivia night was the second event held by Jessie’s Sunshine Crew in which funds raised were more than double the prior year. The crew would like to thank all those who attended, the many volunteers for their hard work and local businesses for their generous contributions, including: Mustang Sally’s Bar & Grill, Angie Scanlon, Auto Zone, Beckwith Pharmacy, Charlotte’s Flowers, Cornerstone Coffee, Dos Primos, Factory Connection, Hechler Hardware, Imagination Pottery, Ink Spot, Jim Guffie, Kris Farmer with Over the Rainbow Heavenly Kookies, Krumbly Burger, Lincoln County Animal Hospital, Lion’s Choice, Lora Myers, Lovely Nails, McDonalds – Troy, Mr. D’s, Naturally Designed, Niki Jacobsmeyer, LLC, O’Reilly’s Auto Parts, Playtime, Rachel Huber at Shear Fantasy, Randy’s Jewelry, Roasted Bean, Rodan & Fields – Kelly Lister, Sonic – Troy, Strands Salon, Sweets to Remember, The Mercantile Outlet, Tiger Car Wash, Troy Flower Shop, Troy Furniture, Ultimate Fitness Plus, Wood’s Fort Restaurant and Zadock’s.

The St. Louis Cure Sarcoma 6K fundraiser was created by a group of individuals directly affected by sarcoma. They are a group of sarcoma warriors, survivors, loved ones of those lost, and relatives of those still fighting. Regardless of their different journeys with this disease, they all have one thing in common: They have all been affected by the lack of sarcoma research and limited treatment options for sarcoma patients. The group’s goal is to generate funding for research both nationwide through The Sarcoma Foundation of America, and right here in St. Louis. 

Fifty percent of the proceeds from this event stay local and are donated to Dr. Brian Van Tine’s Sarcoma Research program. The other 50 percent is donated to the Sarcoma Foundation of America and is used to fund Sarcoma Research Grants around the country.

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