Lopiccola Tourney Lands The Big One:
$1 Million for Cancer Research

Feb. 28, 2003 – The 2002 "For Pete's Sake…" Pete Lopiccola Memorial Marlin Tournament was a milestone event. Proceeds from the latest tournament pushed the group's total contributions to the Rebecca and John Moores UCSD Cancer Center over the $1 million mark.

This achievement was recognized during a reception today (Feb. 28) at the University of California, San Diego, in which representatives from the Pete Lopiccola Cancer Research Foundation presented a $75,000 check to the Cancer Center, bringing the non-profit organization's 12-year giving total to $1,045,500.

The largest single donation to the 2002 tournament was $12,500 from Ken Cloyd, owner of the California Truss Company, Inc.

"We are so very grateful for Lopiccola's longstanding commitment to the Cancer Center and its cutting edge research," said Cinda Lucas, president of the UCSD Cancer Center Foundation, who accepted the check on behalf of the Cancer Center. "The Lopiccola Foundation and the tournament committee are to be commended. Because of your tireless efforts, the Cancer Center has been able to purchase critically needed equipment and to fund bright young researchers who are making important scientific contributions to the world's knowledge about cancer."

More than half of the money raised to date has gone to support 17 young cancer researchers, called Lopiccola Fellows. During the reception, the three newest Fellows gave brief presentations on their work, which includes new insights into how tumors form, why some cancer cells are resistant to chemotherapy, and how to make malignant cells self-destruct.

"It is incredibly satisfying to be able to support these young people," said Chuck Faith, Chairman of the Lopiccola Foundation. "They are the new generation of pioneers, and our hope for a future without cancer."

Tom Nielsen, Lopiccola Foundation Co-chair, echoed that sentiment, adding: "Cancer touches nearly everyone. Chuck and I both lost our fathers to this awful disease and that's one of the reasons we're involved. The tournament's slogan is 'fishing for a cure,' and that is just what we're doing, while enjoying great fishing and great fun at the same time."

The tournament, which is the largest and most successful charity marlin tournament on the West Coast, also benefits children from the Cabo San Lucas area who need medical care.

The 2003 tournament, based at the Hacienda Beach Resort in Cabo San Lucas, is scheduled for October. For further information about the event, contact Chuck Faith at 619-291-0500 or via email at ForPeteSake@att.net.

Founded in 1979, the Rebecca and John Moores UCSD Cancer Center is one of just 39 centers in the United States to hold a National Cancer Institute (NCI) designation as a Comprehensive Cancer Center. As such, it ranks among the top centers in the nation conducting basic and clinical cancer research, providing advanced patient care and serving the community through outreach and education programs.

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News Media Contact:
Nancy Stringer

UCSD Health Sciences Communications HealthBeat: http://health.ucsd.edu/news/