4th Annual Charity Golf Classic Honors Pancreatic Cancer Inspirations

Many of the golfers in our community had a blast at their 4th Annual Charity Golf Classic presented by Hartford Healthcare on June 3rd at the beautiful Shorehaven Golf Club in Norwalk, CT.  Participants experienced a fun-filled day of golf while contributing to the fight against pancreatic cancer. The Project Purple Community came together to make an impact by raising awareness and crucial funding for this disease.

“The benefits gained for the families affected by this disease are what make events like these so important, especially after what our family went through,” says Project Purple Volunteer Katie Coyle. Coyle and her daughter Emma experienced their first Golf Outing as her mother passed away from pancreatic cancer ten years prior. Their family is dedicated to making a difference as Coyle’s brother, Bill Nugent, became the first Project Purple runner to complete all 6 Abbott World Majors in a Project Purple singlet.

Playing For A Cause 

This year’s Golf Classic hosted about 120 participants while raising over $130,000 for pancreatic cancer research and patient financial aid. To show our gratitude, each golfer was given a gift bag with some wonderful items from Project Purple and our sponsors along with a $100 gift card to the Shorehaven Pro shop. 

Participants started off the day with brunch and a chance to explore the exciting raffle table and online auction prizes. The raffle table included prizes such as a CT Staycation Package, Sports Memorabilia with signed photos, a Tage Thompson signed Jersey, a Yeti Roadie Cooler with goodies inside, and so much more! 

This was followed by a round of golf on the beautiful Shorehaven course where golfers also had the chance to “beat the pro” with professional golfer, Julie Houston, on hole 15. This was followed by a cocktail hour and dinner ceremony featuring the 3rd Annual Hall of Fame celebration. This special ceremony is a recognition for those who have been affected by pancreatic cancer and have also had a profound impact on the Project Purple community. These individuals are granted a purple jacket, along with a trophy, and their portrait to be placed on the Project Purple Hall of Fame wall. This is a way to thank them for their contribution to Project Purple and honor their strength in their battle against pancreatic cancer.

Making A Difference

“It’s really wonderful for us to be able to do something like [support] Project Purple,” said Sam Charney, founder of Charney Company which was a company sponsor for this year’s event. Charney was also a participant this year along with his group members and explained why his company’s contribution to Project Purple is so important, “It’s more on a global scale because pancreatic cancer affects everyone.”  

This year’s event was sponsored by numerous organizations such as Hartford Healthcare, Charney Company, and BMW of Darien. There were many other donors and sponsors throughout the course who also contributed. Board member and sponsor Jay Buth states, “ My comrades and I at Eversource are very happy to support the organization monetarily and in the future.

If your organization is interested in sponsoring next year’s event, fill out this interest form.

Project Purple’s 2024 Hall of Fame Inductee: Kasey Grimaldi

The Hall of Fame honored Kasey Grimaldi, a ten-year pancreatic cancer survivor. Grimaldi shared her journey, taking the audience along her journey through her Whipple procedure and numerous rounds of treatments all while having a daughter who was only nine years old at the time of her diagnosis. “The key to fighting this disease is having a great support system,” Grimaldi explained. She honored her amazing husband and loved ones who helped provide her with the hope and drive to push through this horrific cancer. 

Kasey Grimaldi is so passionate about being an advocate and representing hope for this cause. She highlights the importance of early detection and how vital it is when increasing the survival rate. Grimaldi expressed, “When I was first diagnosed, the survival rate was only 5%. As a result of the advancement in early detection, the survival rate is now 13%.” 

Grimaldi hosted a Project Purple fundraiser last October called “Creating Miracles”  in which she raised over $50,000 for early detection and support for others affected by this disease. Grimaldi stated, “Now that I have been through this I know what people are going through, so if I can be that beacon of hope for others that’s all I care about.”

Special Surprise Inductee: Giovanni Verrelli 

Our Founder and CEO Dino Verrelli’s father, Giovanni, passed away on September 5, 2011, following a hard battle with pancreatic cancer. This fueled his family and loved ones’ commitment to honor his memory and find a cure for pancreatic cancer. “Project Purple was born in the memory of Giovanni, so it’s only right to have him inducted into the Hall Of Fame,” said Board Director, Tony Luongo. 

What Dino thought was the end of the dinner ceremony turned into a very special surprise as the team’s Program Director, Vin Kampf, came up to present the memorial and induction of Giovanni’s memory and impact. Fellow family members, loved ones, and Project Purple staff surprised founder Dino Verrelli with a purple jacket, a physical award, and a portrait of his father, Giovanni Verrelli, to be inducted into the Project Purple Hall of Fame. 

Luongo stated, “This is something that Dino would not have suggested on his own accord, so this is a total surprise for him and the entire Verrelli family.” The Verrelli family then came up to the podium to join Dino as they all celebrated the life of Giovanni, the creation of Project Purple, and its impact on the thousands of lives affected by pancreatic cancer. 

Contribute To Project Purple

This amazing event would not have happened without the support of our community uniting under our mission to raise awareness and funds to tackle this dreadful disease.Anyone interested in getting involved with Project Purple and our powerful community, click on our Upcoming Events page to get more information. 

Interested in sponsoring this great event next year? Fill out this interest form.

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