When my dad, Jake, died of cancer in 1970, I wanted to do something in his memory. Having been captain of Penn State's Golf Team and a tournament player, I started a golf tournament, The Jake Gittlen Memorial. I wanted to have the best golfers in central Pennsylvania come together each year and try to raise some money for cancer research.
The first year I raised $2,500 and gave it to a young scientist at Penn State Milton S. Hershey Medical Center, Dr. John Kreider. In the years to follow, Kreider would become one of the top cancer researchers in the world, and add five other investigators to the fold. We now formed the Jake Gittlen Cancer Research Foundation.
Our fund raising skyrocketed with help from companies like Giant Foods, abc27, Sysco Metro, Sprint and many others. We are on target to donate $830,000 this year. We will have given over $14 million since we began in 1970.
If you've contributed to our cause, those survivors - and their families - have you to thank.