The Fire Pit Collective
The Fire Pit Podcast
Slaying The Dragon They Call Cancer
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Slaying The Dragon They Call Cancer

The story of how the loss of one life is saving countless others.

Curing Kids Cancer is an organization that has raised over $23 million with a simple mission: “Find cures for all childhood cancers.”

This podcast tells the story of how one family’s loss has resulted in the inspirational progress to fund the development of CAR T immunotherapy. You’ll meet Grainne and Clay Owen, who, almost 20 years ago, lost their son Killian to leukemia. On the one-year anniversary of his death, they founded an organization that continues to change lives. 

“I didn’t have the luxury of feeling sorry for myself,” says Grainne. “That would’ve been way too selfish because I had three other boys that needed me and they saved me from myself.”

You’ll hear from Dr. Stephan Grupp, of the Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia, who has become a leader in research devoted to developing cell-based and molecularly-targeted therapies to treat leukemia and solid tumors. 

“What motivates me is I see what it looks like when it doesn’t work,” says Dr. Grupp. “And it’s completely unacceptable.”

Is this a golf story? Not really. But golf has played a critical role in the cultivating of the funds that are being used to make the difference. Curing Kids Cancer’s 17th annual golf tournament will be held on Oct. 3rd at Lakewood Country Club in Dallas and is expected to raise upward of $400,000. PGA Tour player Matt NeSmith will be there and makes a cameo in this podcast as he explains why he and his wife, Abigail, are involved in supporting Curing Kids Cancer. 

Lee Corso of ESPN’s “College Gameday” also offers his perspective and support. 

“It was 15 years ago when I met Clay Owen,” says Corso. “He was making his speech in Atlanta about how he and his wife lost their son Killian to leukemia. I was so touched, I walked up to him on the stage and I grabbed him and I said, ‘How can I help?’”

Corso hasn’t stopped his support ever since. And there are countless others. 

If you are interested in getting involved, please give this story a listen and then go to curingkidscancer.org.

For more visit the The Fire Pit Collective to check out everything we are doing.

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Got a comment about this story or a tip on a story we should track down?

You can reach me on Twitter (@mattginella) or on Instagram (@matt_ginella).

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The Fire Pit Collective
The Fire Pit Podcast
In the 25 years of covering golf, the development of the game, courses and the camaraderie that’s core to the culture, it was time for Matt to share some of the best stories he has heard around fire pits all over the world. From PGA Tour players, caddies, architects, avid amateurs and buddies-trip planners, Matt has forged relationships with some of the most colorful and influential people in the game. So grab a drink, a seat and settle in. We’re getting to the essence of one story per podcast. A narrative so deep and meaningful, you save it for a post-round fire pit, which is where no one is in a hurry for the night to end.