There are many charities and fundraisers going on all the time, and that is absolutely a good thing. Sometimes these fundraisers and charities are created by people with wealth who just want to do good for the world. That can be a great reason to raise money or raise awareness on an issue.
For other people, they raise money and awareness of something because they have a very personal connection to it. People who have lost someone to a horrible illness or disease, or maybe even suffer from it themselves, are the ones who usually dive in to help others by starting their own charities.
It can be bittersweet when there is someone who is raising awareness for a horrible ailment because even though they are doing good for the world, it means that they have lost something themselves. One such person is Steelers running back DeAngelo Williams who is fighting back against breast cancer.
DeAngelo Williams is a former Pittsburgh Steelers running back who used to make headlines for making plays on the football field. Now he's making headlines for different reasons. Instead of helping his team, he's helping women with breast cancer. Now in retirement from the field, he has dedicated himself to fighting breast cancer. He was a star running back who used to also play for the University of Memphis. His new goal is to help women detect breast cancer early, before it's too late.
The way he is doing this is by paying for women's mammograms ever since 2015 through his nonprofit, the DeAngelo Williams Foundation. A mammogram is a test that women undergo to check for cancerous lumps and tumors in the breast. It is suggested that women routinely check themselves as well as go into the doctor for a proper test.
The foundation was started in 2015 and has made huge progress as far as the number of mammograms it has been able to pay for. It has since covered the cost of 500 mammograms in the areas of Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, Jonesboro, Arkansas, Charlotte, North Carolina, and Memphis Tennessee. This foundation helps women who would otherwise be unable to pay for these tests, which means the women who need it most are the ones getting the treatment.
Since then, the foundation has covered the cost of over 500 mammograms at hospitals located in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania; Memphis, Tennessee; Jonesboro, Arkansas; and Charlotte, North Carolina. You may be wondering why DeAngelo Williams would go out of his way to do this for women. That's because he has a personal connection. His mother died in 2014 from breast cancer when she was 53 years old.
DeAngelo Williams also lost four of his aunts to breast cancer. He began giving out free mammograms via a program he titled "53 Strong for Sandra." At events, he would give out 53 mammograms to women. This grew and grew until it became what it is today. DeAngelo Williams said, "To be able to help all these women is amazing. This can be life-changing for these women. We are enabling them to get this care that no one should ever be denied or not have access to."
DeAngelo's wife said in a statement, "DeAngelo wants to ensure that no woman (or man) fights breast cancer alone." DeAngelo Williams has shown that something beautiful can emerge from even the greatest tragedies. He could have let the loss of his mother destroy him, but instead he is using it as fuel to help others.