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A Look Back at the Great Events of 2006 -

Things Heated Up at 13th Annual Moores UCSD Cancer Center Luau & Longboard Invitational

margo schwab

photo credit - Jeremiah Sullivan

January 29th, 2007
The Social Diary Columnist & Photographer Margo Schwab

Mix together an incredible La Jolla summer day on the beach, Polynesian dancers, surf legends, a 'friendly' surf competition, a lot of Rebecca and John Moores UCSD Cancer Center supporters, and you have the 13th Annual Luau and Longboard Invitational. It might have been number thirteen, but the event was completely lucky in terms of fun and fundraising. Over $220,000. That brings the collective years' total to well over $1 million raised for cancer research and education purposes.

luau dancers

The Luau dancers

And a slew of surf legends gathered to help out in that spirit.

Yana Deaton and Joey Cabell zipped in from Hawaii as did Rabbit Kekai. Surfing Hall of Famer L.J. Richards was there too. So was Jock Sutherland, Debbie Melville Beacham, Mike Hynson, Robert August, Wingnut, Mike Doyle, Linda Benson, Carl Ekstrom, Jericho Poppler, Mark Martinson, Skip Frye, Woody Ekstrom, John Peck, Joyce Hoffman, David Nuuihwa and a host of other surf legends.

Surf teams sponsored mainly by construction and biotech companies jumped into the spirit. But it was the Walton Family Foundation, that's the WalMart family owners to you and me, that won, and won big. Not the first time either. No surprise with the big Walton Family cheer squad, one of whom has lots to cheer about as an 11 year lymphoma survivor. Patty Hambleton summed the event up succinctly:

"It was a beautiful La Jolla beach day and a true celebration of the enormous strides that our local medical and biotech community have made possible in fighting cancer."

And that was the spirit that Chairperson Paul Cleary and supporters exuded. Among the many guests were Gabby and John Otterson, Anne Otterson, Kate Adams, Christy Walton, Margo Schwab, Nancy and Fred Borrelli, Bettina Borrelli, Buzzy DuPont, J.J. the Police Officer, Event Poster Artist John Van Hamersveld and Anita Post, Murray Palmer, Yvette and Sam Iacobellis, and Georgia and Blair Sadler. That's Georgia Sadler, the 2006 recipient of the Rell Sunn Award.

Dr. Georgia Robins Sadler, BSN, MBA, PhD, is the Associate Director for community outreach and Clinical Professor of Surgery at the Moores UCSD Cancer Center. The 2006 Rell Sunn “Queen of Makaha” Award she received was in recognition of her commitment to the battle against cancer and serving the community.

Rell Sunn, the award's inspiration, was more than a surfer, and more than a person who battled breast cancer for almost two decades. She lived with grace, and the aloha spirit of giving. In fact Rell described that giving spirit simply. "You give and you give and you give … and give from here (the heart), until you have nothing else to give." And she did until her 15 year battle with breast cancer consumed her. But, at the Moores UCSD Luau & Longboard Invitational, her spirit goes on.

And that spirit of giving thrives in Georgia Sadler. She is preceded by a list of other very worthy Rell Sunn Award recipients. They are: Dr. David Tarin, Bill Otterson, Dani Grady, Charles Gorder Sr., Dr. Mark Renneker, Dr. J. Craig Venter, Alex Szekely and Jon Greif.

Event volunteer, Bill Andrews, or BA, a cancer survivor himself had these words of wisdom.

"I think that the most important messages to take-away from an event like this are:

1.  If you have cancer, you're not alone.

2.  A full recovery is the first option - the money raised at this event goes toward the research that may help you or a loved one to survive.

3.  Giving-in to cancer is not an option.

4.  If the doctors give you 3 - 6 months to live, as I was about 25 years ago, sometimes their charts, graphs and statistics are wrong.

5.  The goal is to survive, to beat the cancer, and to tell about it [survival]  - you never know when someone you don't know takes your message to heart - and they too, survive.

What a great feeling it is to transmit a message of faith, hope, and optimism - there is not a better way to go through life - at least in my opinion."

That's faith, hope and optimism backed by a lot of scientific strides in cancer research and cancer prevention.

About the Moores UCSD Cancer Center

"Founded in 1979, UCSD Cancer Center was renamed the Rebecca and John Moores UCSD Cancer Center in honor of the Moores’ leadership gift to the Center. The Center is one of just 39 in the United States to hold a National Cancer Institute (NCI) designation as a Comprehensive Cancer Center. As such, it ranks among the top centers in the nation conducting basic and clinical cancer research, providing advanced patient care and serving the community through outreach and education programs. The center’s mission is to translate promising scientific discoveries into new and better options for the prevention, diagnosis and treatment of cancer, and the amelioration of pain. For more information, visit http://cancer.ucsd.edu."

scott johnston with david nuuihwa and j.j.patty and quique hambletongirl in bikini

Scott Johnston, David Nuuihwa and J.J. ** Patty and Quique Hambleton ** Beach scene

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j.j. with scott johnston and yana deaton and joey cabell

J.J. with Scott Johnston, Yana Deaton and Joey Cabell

coco tihanyi and familyman with babymike hynson of endless summer

Coco Tihanyi Co-Owner and Founder of Surf Diva with her family ** Guests ** Endless Summer movie's Mike Hynson

blair and georgia sadler with jock sutherlandguylyn cummingsluau dancer

Blair and Georgia Sadler with Jock Sutherland ** Guylyn Cummings ** Luau dancer

bettina borrelli

Bettina Borrelli

paul and charla mullenstephanie hoffman

Guest with Paul and Charla Mullen ** Stephanie Hoffman with her daughter Courtney

bruce brown with wingnut and rabbit kekai

Bruce Brown with Wingnut and Rabbit Kekai

murray palmerleilani hull

Murray Palmer ** Leilani Hull

artist john van hamersveld and anita postlinden blue of general atomics

Artist John Van Hamersveld and Anita Post ** Linden Blue

bill andrews and friendjoyce hoffman and friend

Bill Andrews and friend ** Joyce Hoffman on right with her best friend

woody ekstrom and rabbit kekai and his wife

Woody Ekstrom and Linda Benson ** Rabbit Kekai with his wife

yana deaton and friendbuzz du pont

Yana Deaton with a friend ** Buzzy DuPont

john moores table with winning auction bidjohn moores family with winning auction bid

The John Moores table after bidding and buying a surfboard for $55,000

kate adamsyvette and sam iacobellis

Kate Adams ** Yvette and Sam Iacobellis

joyce hoffman

Joyce Hoffman ** Guests

carl ekstromrabbit kekai

Carl Ekstrom ** Marianne ** Rabbit Kekai

rabbit kekai and bruce brownblair sadler with anne otterson and georgia sadler Rabbit Kekai with Bruce Brown ** Blair Sadler, Anne Otterson, and Georgia Sadler

Rabbit Kekai

yana deaton and joey cabell with l.j. richardswinners of a surfboard

Yana Deaton and Joey Cabell with L.J. Richards ** Family posing with surfboard

paul clearycarol saikhon and friend

Chairperson Paul Cleary ** Carol Saikhon on right with friend

jeff hamby with television camerajohn hoffman

Jeff Hamby ** John Hoffman with son

* Margo Schwab has produced, written, interviewed and photographed for various media organizations since 1989. Schwab has a college degree from Scripps College and a Masters of Business degree from the University of San Diego. Schwab volunteers for numerous charity organizations. She also continues to lobby for water safety and for family violence mitigation. Schwab is the owner and publisher of The Social Diary. Margo is currently writing a book based on La Jolla.

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