TOLEDO, Ohio March 19, 2013 More northwest Ohio garden centers this spring are teaming up with an Arizona-based biomedical research organization to fight pancreatic cancer through the sale of purple flowers, which symbolize the nation's fourth leading cause of cancer death.
The Maumee Valley Growers, who helped initiate the "Plant Purple-Grow Hope" campaign in 2011, are joined this year by The Anderson's Markets and Sautter's Markets in raising funds for pancreatic cancer research at the Phoenix-based non-profit Translational Genomics Research Institute (TGen).
Growers and retailers will raise funds for TGen during May and June by donating a portion of the sale of any purple flowers. Purple is the color representing pancreatic cancer.
"We're looking at expanding the program this year. It can only get bigger," said Toledo native Deanna Bobak, who lost her father, Donald Swicegood of Toledo, to pancreatic cancer. He died only months after his diagnosis, and Bobak hopes a method of early detection can be developed.
"People are excited. There's a lot of positive energy in moving the program forward," said Bobak, who is spearheading the drive again this year in the Toledo area.
Jim Sautter, owner of Sautter's Markets in suburban Toledo, buys from local farms and likes to get involved in local causes. He views participation in Plant Purple-Grow Hope as a great opportunity to help his local community.
While he doesn't have anyone in his immediate family impacted by pancreatic cancer, Sautter said he has known those who have. "It's a very serious disease, and it would be wonderful if TGen could make some headway toward better treatments, or even a cure."
Joe Perlaky, Executive Director of the Maumee Valley Growers, said, "Our 13 garden centers that developed the program have provided a great opportunity for location expansion and increased community awareness. This is important to us. It's really about
|Contact: Steve Yozwiak|
The Translational Genomics Research Institute