September 16, 2019
Cypress Springs High School had a “Gold Out” game on Sept. 5 against Katy Taylor to help bring awareness to childhood cancer. A fundraiser was held, with proceeds going to pediatric cancer research, and cheerleaders, football coaches, students and administrators wore gold shirts at the game. In addition, two families were celebrated as honorary captains. (Photo by Mya Banks, Cypress Springs HS)
By Lilian Ferran, Cypress Springs HS
Sept. 16, 2019—In helping bring awareness to childhood cancer, Cypress Springs High School designated its first home football game as a “Gold Out” night for the campus and its community to show unity and honor those tackling the disease.
In recognition of Childhood Cancer Awareness Month, Cypress Springs invited two current Panthers and their families to serve as honorary captains for its Sept. 5 game against Katy Taylor at Cy-Fair FCU Stadium.
Junior Madeline Seto was diagnosed with embryonal sarcoma, a rare form of liver cancer, in September 2018. Sophomore Emily Schaefer and her family were also on the field–they lost son and younger brother Malachi to infection during a fifth round of leukemia treatment.
Krystal Schaefer, a fourth grade student at Andre’ Elementary School, conducted the pre-game coin flip while her sister and parents, Benjamin and Kerri Schaefer, looked on.
“There are so many children and families dealing with childhood cancer of some kind,” Kerri said. “We’ve been part of the cancer community for 13 years and to see everyone work together to help families is nice because it’s really hard to do.”
Cypress Springs raised $1,850 that will be donated directly to pediatric cancer research. Members of the school community, from the Panteras to the football coaches, administration, honored families and others in attendance, wore gold shirts sold as part of the fundraiser.
“To me, this affects the population that we work with–high school kids and kids in general,” said Athletic Trainer Dustin Cedidla. “It’s important to do what we can to help in any way.”
Every year, more than 15,000 children are diagnosed with cancer and approximately 25 percent will not survive the disease. Nonprofit charitable organizations, like the American Childhood Cancer Organization, provide helpful information on cancer treatment and services, as well as advocating for patients, survivors and families. In addition, communities host their own events and donate to research institutions.
CFISD schools and organizations routinely hold drives and events for cancer awareness among many other causes.
“‘Gold Out’ week is important to us because the kids out there suffering from cancer don't deserve it; they deserve a normal life like us,” said Cypress Springs freshman Robert Escamilla.
Added Cedidla: “I just hope that we keep awareness of this all the time and not just September. These kids are getting diagnosed every day, every month. It’s not just a September thing. It’s year-round.”