On Saturday, Feb. 13 from 1 to 5 p.m. in Hollinger Field House, West Chester University’s Play 4 Kay Event will be hosted by the Golden Rams women’s basketball team in collaboration with the Office of Service-Learning and Volunteer Programs, the Women’s Center, the Student Service Inc., Colleges Against Cancer, Zeta Tau Alpha, the Women’s Basketball Coaches Association and other student organizations and community partners.
Play 4 Kay is a national initiative that, through fundraising efforts, supports the Kay Yow Cancer Fund.
The Kay Yow fund supports individuals living with breast cancer and raises funds for scientific research in an effort to stomp out cancer.
Sandra Kay Yow was born March 14, 1942 in Gibsonville, N.C. Her love for the game of basketball took her all the way to the Basketball Hall of Fame.
Coach Kay Yow was the head basketball coach of North Carolina State University, as well as the past president and the founding member of the Women’s Basketball Coach’s Association (WBCA) when she was diagnosed with breast cancer in 1987.
In a 2007 interview, Yow said, “I have to go through it. I accept that, and I’m not panicked about it because the Lord is in control. But it just would be so saddening if I had to go through it and I couldn’t help people. But then I see I’m helping others in a greater way than I ever have. That’s the amazing thing, you know?”
Yow passed away on Jan. 24, 2009 after battling breast cancer for the third time.
Before she passed, she created the Play 4 Kay Fund in order to help women less fortunate than herself.
Yow hoped the fund would raise money for cancer-related research and give those in need access to better cancer care. Since its inception, the fund has raised over $5 million to support women’s cancer research and continues to serve those in need.
Money is raised through the sale of T-shirts, baked goods, pink hair extensions, face painting and raffle baskets that contain many prizes.
These prizes range from event tickets to food baskets to gift cards and more.
In addition to the Play 4 Kay event, Nike is also doing its part to donate to Yow’s Fund. The Nike Kay Yow collection includes socks, running and athletic shoes, T-shirts and more.
To purchase items directly from Nike, you can visit Nike.com and type ‘Kay Yow’ in the search field to view which items Nike currently has in stock.
In honor of Yow’s passing, Nike took out the following full page ad in the Raleigh, N.C. newspaper “The News & Observer,” which praised Yow for being an inpiration to other women.
“…Young women from North Carolina to Bucharest to Moscow to Mexico to Caracas to Taipei to Brazil to Seoul to L.A. think they can do anything in basketball or otherwise-because of you… what you taught them and us can’t be placed in any category as simple as English or basketball. You gave us so much more. You gave us you.”
The Nike ad went on to commend Coach Kay’s strength, saying, “You’re a wonderful and extraordinary lady, Sandra Kay Yow. And when we say wonderful, we mean wow. And when we say extraordinary, we mean extra ordinary. And when we think of those pink ribbons, we think they should be like a blanket that covers everyone and shields us and reminds us all to be wonderful, extraordinary, dignified, powerful, strength-giving heroes just like you. See what you’ve done.”
Arden Colleluori is a third-year student majoring in English writing and women’s and gender studies with a minor in Spanish. She can be reached at AC809169@wcupa.edu.