Last updated: March 17. 2014 10:18AM - 764 Views
By Kevin Boozer kboozer@civitasmedia.com

Ron Cotney, left, checks out videos for regular customer Douglas Gaiman, right.
Ron Cotney, left, checks out videos for regular customer Douglas Gaiman, right.
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NEWBERRY — Dining in and renting a movie might be a cure for boredom or loneliness on a Newberry Friday night, but thanks to a philanthropic initiative by Family Video, that movie rental could help lead to a different cure — a cure for cancer.

On March 14, customers at Family Video started doing their part to help eradicate lymphoma.

Through March 30, customers can give personal donations or have their total rounded up to the next highest dollar and donate the extra money.

Assistant Manager Ron Cotney said customers raised $3,800 last year.

“Our company relies on word-of-mouth advertising to get people into the store. Once there, they see our number one priority is customer service and that’s how we keep them coming back,” Cotney said.

It means a lot to him to help his customers give something back, and he gives to the initiative as well.

Though Cotney was not aware of a Family Video customer currently battling leukemia or lymphoma, he said one customer is undergoing chemotherapy for breast cancer.

One hundred percent of the money raised benefits lymphoma research. According to statistics provided by Family Video, lymphoma is the most common type of blood cancer in adults. About 200 Americans are diagnosed daily, or one person every seven minutes. More than 500,000 Americans are living with a form of Lymphoma.

The largest privately owned video store company in the world, Family Video uses a portion of the money raised to support a Tissue Collection and Data Center at the University of Chicago Medicine and the Lymphoma Research Foundation.

That center’s purpose is advancing the understanding of lymphoma and developing new treatments.

The University of Chicago was one of the first hospitals to use chemotherapy and has worked over the years at defining lymphoma subtypes and advanced treatment protocols.

New cures and innovative clinical trials also have come from the university. Researchers say the tissue bank will be used to examine underlying mechanisms of lymphoma and that data will be used to study how age, gender, background, weight, environment, and lifestyle affect prognosis and treatment.

Funds also benefit The Lymphoma Research Foundation (LRF), the nation’s largest non-profit organization devoted to funding innovative research and providing people with lymphoma and healthcare professionals with up-to-date information about this type of cancer.

Molecular and genetic testing are areas of research this funding supports, and it is hoped those areas will lead to breakthrough therapies targeted against lymphoma.

To donate to the fundraiser, come by the video store at 1930 Main Street or call 276-8997 to donate by phone.

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