Candler Clays raises over $190K for cancer programs

Team Forest City Ella Whitley, Gracie Whitley, June McKenzie and Lee Whitley celebrate as the first-place team.
Clay target shooters and auction participants from across the Low Country had a hand in raising nearly $2K in funds to contribute to services for local cancer patients.

The 19th annual Candler Clays Charity Shoot and Auction raised $190,367 for St. Joseph’s/Candler Foundations’ Advancements in Cancer Care in Savannah and surrounding regions, released the foundation.

"People truly gathered in the spirit of gratitude and giving back to support the Nurse Navigation Program and support services for the cancer patients we treat." — Vernice Rackett, executive director of the St. Joseph's/Candler Foundations

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click to enlarge Curt Oelschig, Dee Pinckney,  Sales Pinckney and Larry Austin prepare to shoot clays. - PHOTO COURTESY OF ST. JOSEPH'S/CANDLER FOUNDATION
Photo courtesy of St. Joseph's/Candler Foundation
Curt Oelschig, Dee Pinckney, Sales Pinckney and Larry Austin prepare to shoot clays.
“Candler Clays enjoys a loyal following of its major sponsors, committee, volunteers and attendees,” said Vernice Rackett, executive director of the St. Joseph’s/Candler Foundations. “The Live Auction and Clay Shoot were executed this year with thoughtful consideration of the safety and wellbeing of all participants ensuring that COVID protocols were in place. People truly gathered in the spirit of gratitude and giving back to support the Nurse Navigation Program and support services for the cancer patients we treat.”

click to enlarge Members of the community await the live auction to benefit St. Joseph’s/Candler Foundations’ Advancements in Cancer Care in Savannah and surrounding regions. - PHOTO COURTESY OF ST. JOSEPH'S/CANDLER FOUNDATION
Photo courtesy of St. Joseph's/Candler Foundation
Members of the community await the live auction to benefit St. Joseph’s/Candler Foundations’ Advancements in Cancer Care in Savannah and surrounding regions.
The event benefits the Nancy N. and J.C. Lewis Cancer & Research Pavilion at St. Joseph’s/Candler and has raised $1.6 million since its inception.

The annual Fund A Need portion of Candler Clays raised a record $47,500 for the Nurse Navigation program. Nurse navigators help cancer patients through their journey by coordinating appointments, keeping up with treatments and communicating. During the COVID-19 pandemic they have been exceptionally busy. The money raised this year will fund these navigators and help patients through an even more difficult time than usual.

click to enlarge Representatives from St. Joseph's/Candler accept funds raised from the 2021 Candler Clays event. - PHOTO COURTESY OF ST. JOSEPH'S/CANDLER FOUNDATION
Photo courtesy of St. Joseph's/Candler Foundation
Representatives from St. Joseph's/Candler accept funds raised from the 2021 Candler Clays event.
Prizes were presented to the top male and female shooter as well as to first and second place teams and Lewis Class C & B. The first place winning team was Team Forest City, consisting of Gracie, Ella and Lee Whitley and June McKenzie.

The top adult male shooter was Tim Murray, and the top youth male shooter was Drake Cooper. The top adult female shooter was Kathy Warden and the top youth female shooter was Ella Whitley, for the third year in a row, the foundation released. Each year the event honors a survivor or memorializes someone who died of cancer. This year’s honoree was the late Carolyn Johnson Trosdal. She was married to her husband, Einer Trosdal, III, for 33 years and had three children, Katherine, Storm and Richard. She died in 2014.

click to enlarge Katie Rudder, Gretchen Pearce and Vernice Rackett of the St. Joseph’s/Candler Foundations attend the event. - PHOTO COURTESY OF ST. JOSEPH'S/CANDLER FOUNDATION
Photo courtesy of St. Joseph's/Candler Foundation
Katie Rudder, Gretchen Pearce and Vernice Rackett of the St. Joseph’s/Candler Foundations attend the event.
The St. Joseph’s/Candler Foundations support vital clinical programs, assist in the purchase of cutting-edge medical technology and enhance outreach programs designed to keep people in our community healthy. This important educational component helps the community be more proactive about their health and disease management.

To learn more or to make a donation, visit sjchs.org/foundations.

About The Author

Noelle Wiehe

Noelle Wiehe is a dream-chasing journalist from Ohio. She obtained a Bachelor of Arts with a focus in journalism from the University of Cincinnati and attended the United States Army's Defense Information School at Fort Meade, Maryland. A U.S. Army veteran, Wiehe has a passion for sharing stories of local heroes,...
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