Giants' Rookie LB/cancer survivor Mark Herzlich and fellow Boston College alum Chris Snee joined Keli Coughlin on a conference call today to discuss annual “Champions For Children” Gala and remember the late Jay McGillis, who inspired the Tom Coughlin Jay Fund Foundation.
The Champions For Children Gala is open to the public. Information is available by calling 212-627-1000 or by emailing email@example.com. Details can be found at www.tcjayfund.org.
Keli Coughlin on the fundraising event, the McGillis family and the Jay Fund:
A: October 28 is our 7th annual Champions for Children Gala honoring Steve Sabol of NFL Films and Timothy Shinn of United Crane Rentals. We expect about 500 people and a great night. Usually at least half the New York Giants team comes to the event.
Chris Snee on the Champions For Children Gala, which he has attended several times since its inception in 2005:
A: The Champions For Children Gala is a night out for a great cause. We’ve been fortunate enough to have great, great turnouts on behalf of many Giants players who take the time in their Friday nights to go in and help raise money to beat cancer and help families who are dealing with this horrible, horrible illness.
It’s a really a fun event for us. We have the easy part. We just go in and wave and that’s our deal. I look forward to it every year.
Mark Herzlich on his connection to Jay McGillis:
A: I never had the opportunity to meet Jay, obviously, but when you get to Boston College, the first thing that you are told about is Jay’s story and his fight. His fight was so great and it is such a great way to embody what Boston College is all about. So, I’ve known about Jay, being that he is honored every year at our spring game with the Jay McGillis Award. It’s a real honor on senior day for the simple fact that it is chosen by the McGillis Family in honor of Jay. So, I’ve known about Jay for a long time and, honestly, after I was diagnosed with cancer, my understanding for what he went through was even greater. So, our connection just through the cancer is pretty cool.
On his connection to The Jay Fund:
A: We knew about Coach Coughlin and the Jay Fund at Boston College. It was kind of peripheral because we couldn’t get down to Jacksonville, but we were all aware. I’m getting more familiar with it now and the more I learn, the more I understand how it helps families. When I was a cancer patient, my family could afford it okay, but I’ve seen the hardship that other families go through.
Being in the NFL now, I’ve got a much larger platform than I had in college. To be able to go out and show support for The Jay Fund on October 28 is great, especially considering the connections.
On his current condition:
A: I’m feeling great. I don’t think about it at all. There are no lingering effects and I think I’m better for it today.
On football and Coach Coughlin:
A: I really like playing for Coach Coughlin. He’s very up front about what he expects from people. He expects you to play great. I expect that of myself. So, it’s great to be on the same page with him. I’ve done a relatively good job on special teams. I’m trying to take advantage of opportunities.
On playing in his hometown of Philadelphia last week:
A: It was great playing in Philadelphia. There is a lot of emotion. Growing up there, I know they are very passionate about their Eagles. For me, it was a cool experience. I’ve been to The Vet and The Linc many times and to get to play on that field is something I dreamed about as a kid.
On being a cancer patient knowing that there is support from organizations like The Tom Coughlin Jay Fund Foundation:
A: When I was going through it all as a patient, it was good to know that people have your back and are rooting for you. You might not know them. You don’t see it going on. You don’t see the money coming in and you don’t get to the events. You are kind of helpless as a patient because you’re in the hands of doctors and you’re in the private hands of medical researchers. You kind of have to rely on them. The people who get help from the Jay Fund, they know that the Jay Fund has their back. If someone has to stop working in the family and that becomes a financial crisis, that’s when organizations like the Jay Fund step in in order to help the familly.
The seventh annual Tom Coughlin Jay Fund Foundation fundraising event, this year honoring Steve Sabol of NFL Films and Timothy H. Shinn, president and CEO of United Crane Rentals for their community service efforts on behalf of children.