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32nd Annual Hutch Holiday Gala Raises Millions for Cancer Research
Date:12/2/2007

SEATTLE, Dec. 2 /PRNewswire/ -- A "challenge donation" appeal at last night's Hutch Holiday Gala helped push the total funds raised to more than $4.2 million for Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center.

The annual black-tie Gala is the largest fundraiser for the Hutchinson Center. The event took place from 5 p.m. until midnight at the Seattle Sheraton Hotel.

"Help the Hutch" is the portion of the live auction during which every dollar donated is matched by challenge donors. One of those donors was Susie Morganti of Bellevue, Wash., who lost her husband, Johnny, to cancer last summer after 73 years of marriage. Following Johnny's death, Susie decided to donate $500,000 in memory of her husband and a late niece, Jackie Bylund. Morganti, who yesterday celebrated her 95th birthday, said she was inspired by the prospect of leveraging more donations for cancer research.

"We were pleased to present the Hutch Holiday Gala challenge in honor of loved ones we've lost," said Gary Bylund, Morganti's nephew and family spokesperson. "In one way or another, most of us have experienced life changes because of cancer. The Hutch Holiday Gala is our opportunity to positively impact cancer research at the Center, and thereby the lives of our family and friends."

Dr. Lee Hartwell, president and director of the Hutchinson Center, said donations such as Morganti's are essential to help Center scientists make discoveries that improve the future of human health.

"We are so fortunate that our guests recognize the power of private support in the fight against cancer," Hartwell said. "Through the Hutch Holiday Gala, we partner with these generous families and others in the community to empower our science against cancer and other diseases."

Gala patrons also opened their pocketbooks for lavish live-auction packages such as dinner for 20 with the Hutchinson Center's three Nobel laureates, which sold for $26,000; a Lake Union cruise and scavenger h
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SOURCE Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center
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