Friday, May 14, 2021

Metcalf Helps Tetrick in Fight Against Cancer

Photo courtesy of Terrence Metcalf
Photo courtesy of Terrence Metcalf

Rebel legend continues to give back to Oxford community

Former Ole Miss lineman Terrence Metcalf is used to facing opponents head on. He did so for four years at Ole Miss, and for many years after that as an NFL player for the Chicago Bears.

Now the Rebel legend is focused on helping Oxford’s Chance Tetrick fight an even more powerful opponent—leukemia. (Click here to read more about Chance.)

Metcalf is the co-organizer of the upcoming Benefit Dinner and Silent Auction for 10-year old Chance. The function will be held Monday, September 16th, at 6:00 pm at the Oxford Convention Center, and all are invited to attend.

Ole Miss Athletic Director Ross Bjork and Metcalf are the speakers for the event, which is being catered by Taylor Grocery.

Oxford’s Clay Rodgers, the other co-organizer of the event, praised Metcalf for his exhaustive support. “When I messaged Terrence on Facebook about Chance’s situation, he immediately replied and said he was on board for a fund raiser,” Rodgers said. “In fact, Terrence’s exact words were: ‘Clay, I’m a man of action. Let’s do this.’”

Together, Metcalf and Rodgers have coordinated what they hope will be a meaningful night for the Tetrick family and the Oxford community, and one that will raise money to help the family with the extensive expenses associated with fighting an illness such as Chance’s.

To see a list of items available at the auction, click here.

A legend gives back

Rodgers spent hours in The Grove last Saturday before the football game passing out flyers about Chance and the benefit. He soon discovered this is not the first time Metcalf has chipped in to assist those in the Oxford community. “I encountered people tailgating who Terrence had helped, or who knew of people Terrence had helped,” Rodgers said. “He is known for giving back to the community,” he added.

HottyToddy.com spoke with the Rebel great and asked why he was so committed to helping others. “I have been blessed by God,” Metcalf said, “and I believe in giving back in whatever way I can. Our hope is this fund raiser will be an inspiring event for those who attend, as well as successful in helping the Tetrick family offset some of the tremendous expenses they are facing.”

Chance is scheduled to undergo a three-year regimen of rigorous chemotherapy at St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital. Six months into the treatment, the disease is taking its toll on not only Chance and his family, but on their pocketbooks, as well.

The cost of childhood cancer

Chance and his little sister Collins / Photo courtesy of Jenn Tetrick
Chance and his little sister Collins / Photo courtesy of Jenn Tetrick

According to the American Childhood Cancer Organization, “more than 60% of families affected spend $1,000-10,000 each year on out of pocket, non-medical expenses such as food, childcare and transportation.” In addition to these out of pocket expenses, families are spending 10-40 hours weekly caring for their sick child outside of standard treatment. Most families, as a result, are forced to reduce the number of employed persons in their households, and this leads to a domino effect that ultimately cripples the family’s ability to keep up with daily expenses.

With the average cancer child enduring 2 ½ -3 years of treatment, his or her family will face approximately $30,000 on out of pocket expenses—and that is if there are no additional consequences.

Chance’s leukemia has been anything but “ordinary.” When diagnosed, the young boy had cancer in his brain, spine, and bone marrow, and has since had many complications over the ensuing months.

A community effort

But Chance is a fighter who has inspired the Ole Miss Rebel coaching staff and football team—including past players such as Metcalf. “This benefit is a great way to show support for Chance,” Metcalf said. “We want folks to come out to the Convention Center, have a nice dinner, bid on some of the auction items, and listen to AD Bjork speak,” Metcalf said.

“We’ve got some tremendous auction items, including a jersey signed by Eli Manning, a powder-blue helmet signed by Dexter McCluster, an Ole Miss helmet and jerseys signed by Coach Hugh Freeze, and footballs signed by McCluster and former Ripley, MS native and 2-time Super Bowl winner Kendall Simmons,” Metcalf noted.

There are also many other items for auction that are not football-related. Oxford University Club has donated a year membership, and almost every business on the Square has donated merchandise or gift cards. “This is truly a community endeavor,” Metcalf said. “My hope is people will leave the event inspired by the faith and perseverance of Chance, as well as the kindness of their own community.”

Much like he did in the days he spent protecting QB Eli Manning’s blind side, Metcalf is ready to do all he can to help Chance as the boy battles the toughest opponent imaginable.

For more information

Please visit FinsUpForChance.com where you can make a donation, purchase tickets for the benefit, see the items in the auction, or just learn more about Chance. Tickets are $25.00 and may also be purchased at the door.

– Evelyn Van Pelt, HottyToddy.com Sports Reporter

Evelyn was born in Texas, but has strong family ties to Mississippi. Her relatives are from Hinds County, and her daughter received three degrees from Ole Miss–culminating with a PharmD in 2012. Evelyn studied English at Texas A&M University, but is an Ole Miss Rebel at heart, falling in love with the both the school and Oxford over a decade ago when her daughter began school. Evelyn has a home in Texas, but spends as much time as possible in Mississippi where her daughter still lives. She enjoys covering Ole Miss football for gridirongirl.org and HottyToddy.com. Email her at olemissevie@gmail.com.

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