Kiteboarders Cross Lake Pontchartrain for Leukemia Awareness
2nd Annual Kiteboarder Crossing covers 24-mile distance traditionally completed by boat
March 21 marked the second time Lake Pontchartrain’s 24 mile stretch was conquered by a local kiteboarder on a mission to create awareness and raise $10,000 for blood cancer research. Professional Kiteboarder Chris Stuckey completed the marathon distance for the 2nd Annual Kiteboarder Crossing, a fundraiser he founded the year before.
The Kiteboarder Crossing is a subsidiary to the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society’s annual Leukemia Cup Regatta. This Regatta is held at various yacht clubs across the country each year and the Kiteboarder Crossing shares in this mission.
Overbearing winds made for a rough journey, taking Stuckey more than three hours to tackle – double the time it took him last year. However, March 21 was another record year for the benevolent kiteboarder: he was the only regatta participant to complete the event that day. Both the Leukemia Cup Regatta, as well as another local sailing race, were cancelled due to the dangerous winds.
“With waves four to six feet high and wind gusts topping out at 35 knots, conditions attempted to bring fatigue on early” explained Stuckey. “However, I locked in the edge of my board to hold down the power of the kite and remembering my father’s struggle, I told myself I can do this”
Stuckey’s inspiration to participate in the Leukemia Cup Regatta came from his father, Terry Stuckey, who died at the age of 43 after two long years battling Acute Myelogenous Leukemia.
“I didn’t originally consider participating again this year” says Stuckey. “Then, I met Kendall, a 4 year old boy who is in remission from battling a rare form of Leukemia. At that moment it became clear; this little guy’s energy and smile was enough to motivate me to get involved and fundraise another $10,000 for the LLS.”
The event is over, but the fundraising continues. Donations close on June 30th and $3,000 still needs to be raised. Donate today at www.kiteboardercrossing.com
Limited edition Kiteboarder Crossing t-shirts are available at www.thechrisstuckey.com. Proceeds go to the cause.
For images of the crossing, visit http://www.flickr.com/photos/48724714@N07/
For more information, visit the 2010 Lake Pontchartrain Kiteboarder Crossing website at www.kiteboardercrossing.com