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October 2021 Jefferson Award: Amy Helton

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Amy Helton Jefferson Award Honoree

STEVENS POINT, Wis. (WAOW)-- In 2015, doctors diagnosed Tyler Jaworski with cancer during his first year of college.

"It kind of hit me like a whirlwind," Tyler said.

His mother said her world fell apart.

"He is my child, and you don't expect the c-word to come into your family," Julie Jaworski explains.

Tyler's aunt, Amy Helton, set out to start a fundraiser to help the family defray medical costs, so she turned to Tyler's high school, Stevens Point Area Senior High (SPASH).

"It is called Blackout Cancer, and it's a football game between SPASH and Marshfield High School," Helton said. 

Helton got the OK for the fundraiser from coaches at both schools and began selling T-shirts.

That was six years ago; since then, Blackout Cancer has raised almost $100,000 for area cancer patients.

"Each year, a new patient gets the majority of the funds," Helton said. "We also give a donation to Marshfield and Stevens Point area cancer centers." 

Helton's nephew is doing well since undergoing treatment.

His mother said she is grateful for the family and community support.

"My son came out of treatments with no medical bills," Julie Jaworski said. " I would like to say the same about his education!"

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