Vulcan Materials fundraiser takes aim at Cystic Fibrosis

Denny Austin  with Vulcan Materials takes aim at the Cystic Fibrosis fundraiser.

Photo by Leslie Karnowski

Denny Austin with Vulcan Materials takes aim at the Cystic Fibrosis fundraiser.

What can 480 shooting participants, 50-plus volunteers for each day, 700 pounds of prime rib and a host of great sponsors accomplish in two days?

They can “Give a Shot” at helping to find a cure for Cystic Fibrosis.

The 9th Annual Vulcan Materials ‘Make a Break Thru for CF’ sporting clays tournament attracted sponsors such as Vulcan Materials Company, Seay Oil, Stowers Equipment, Power Equipment, Industrial Fabrication and Repair GCR Tires, Heartland Pump, Southern Wire, Tema Isenmann, Veyance Technologies and many more for two days of clays shooting to help the CF cause. The event saw over 60,000 shots and raised over $164,000 to fight the disease. Equally impressive is the fact that this year the event surpassed the $1 million mark for its run.

The 9th annual Vulcan Materials ‘Make a Break Thru for CF’ sporting clays tournament is hosted by Cure Finders out of Sevierville and held in Maryville. Each year volunteers, not only from Vulcan but also from local companies Food City, Smoky Mountain Knife Works, Dyno Nobel, Continental Aerial Survey, Remco, Austin Powder, Lewis-Geotz, TN Waste and many others donate time, money and support for this annual fundraising event.

Why is this event so successful? “We put a lot of effort into making certain that everyone in attendance knows their money and support are making research possible,” said Jim Deanda, father of two children with CF. Jim, Callie, who is 15, and Cale, 13, spoke to the participants of their gratitude for their work, donations and commitment to finding a cure for CF.

“On behalf of all CF parents, family and friends, thank you,” he said. “There is no debt more deeply and humbly felt than for the lives of our children. You are giving them a life they could not have had.”

During his welcome talk Kirk Eastin, a Vulcan Materials plant manager, shared the good news of recent research that now shows a light at the end of the tunnel for CF patients. “We’re winning,” said Eastin. “Simply put, this news has generated hope for health for CF patients all over the world. Hope they didn’t have as recent as one year ago.”

CF is a genetic disease that causes thick, sticky mucus throughout the body. People with CF, including babies, have a hard time getting enough nutrition because of problems with the digestion of their food. The mucus also causes lung problems. The average life expectancy is in the mid-30s and climbing fast due to great medical advances. However, their health depends on many things, including how well they take care of themselves.

The message heard by those at the fundraiser however was this: CF is no longer a death sentence. There is hope.

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