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General News

A Hand to Hold – Wings to Cure Gala Raises $1.4 Million for Cancer Research

December 1, 2022

CHICAGO – Some 800 friends and supporters of the Hippocratic Cancer Research Foundation gathered at the 7th annual Wings to Cure Gala on November 12th at the Hilton Chicago, raising $1.4 million in cancer research funds.

“Our goal, to eliminate cancer and save lives, is ambitious but achievable,” said Eleni Bousis, Chair of HCRF’s Founding Board.

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, cancer was the second leading cause of death, after heart disease, in the United States in 2020.

Funds raised by the HCRF support ‘outside of the box’ cancer research at the Robert H. Lurie Comprehensive Cancer Center of Northwestern University. At the helm of the efforts is Athens-born oncologist and Director at the Cancer Center, Dr. Leonidas C. Platanias, along with his team including Dr. Maha Hussain, Professor of Medicine and Deputy Director of the Lurie Comprehensive Cancer Center at Northwestern, and Dr. William J. Gradishar, Chief Professor and Director of Breast Oncology in the Division of Hematology and Medical Oncology at Northwestern.

The Hippocratic Cancer Research Foundation held its 7th annual Wings to Cure Gala on November 12th at the Hilton Chicago, raising $1.4 million in cancer research funds.
The Hippocratic Cancer Research Foundation held its 7th annual Wings to Cure Gala on November 12th at the Hilton Chicago, raising $1.4 million in cancer research funds.

“Every hour, about 80 people die of cancer, so in the hours we will be here about 400 people will die of cancer. The research we do will save lives,” Dr. Platanias said. “If you think about it, out of 400 people who would die tonight from cancer, if we cut this number in half, that is saving 200 lives. Every dollar that goes to cancer research is saving lives at some point, sooner or later,” Dr. Platanias said.

Since its inception, the HCRF has raised millions of dollars for research to identify cellular pathways that affect all cancers, develop novel treatments for hematological malignancies, and launch innovative trials for all types of cancers, among other related efforts.

“I’m here today to tell you how important this effort is,” said Charlene Seaman. “It’s really important that we have research for new drugs to help people survive. Women with stage four breast cancer are living today because of drugs,” she said fighting back tears after announcing her own cancer battle.

The elegant Wings to Cure gala is one of Chicago’s most anticipated events for the Greek-American community and beyond. Guests of honor included Minister of Development and Investment of Greece Adonis Georgiadis and his wife Evgenia Manolidou, as well as Mayor of Chicago Lori Lightfoot.

The Hippocratic Cancer Research Foundation held its 7th annual Wings to Cure Gala on November 12th at the Hilton Chicago, raising $1.4 million in cancer research funds.

“It is with deep emotion that we heard the stories of people who fought and won the battle with this illness,” said Consul General of Greece in Chicago, Emmanuel Koubarakis.

During the night, gala guests had the chance to bid on auction items including sports memorabilia and travel packages that contributed to the fundraising efforts.

The HCRF was founded by five friends over lunch in the fall of 2013: the late Jay Michael, Danielle Samolovich, Annasophia Loumis, Nicole Eliadis-Boufis, and Eleni Bousis.

“What my mom has started is incredible. She works really hard to fight cancer and find ways to save people’s lives, which I think is her mission in life, and we are super proud of everything she’s done,” said Evangelo Bousis.

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