Saturday, April 19, 2014 3:08 AM
Redskins Cooley spoke with breast cancer survivors on Oct. 15 at Redskins Park in Ashburn, Virginia. Photo by Daniel Kucin Jr
Published on: Friday, October 25, 2013
By Daniel Kucin Jr, Sentinel Sports Reporter
The Washington Redskins Charitable Foundation joined forces Mrs. Tanya Snyder, and the American Cancer Society to host their sixth annual All-Star Survivors Celebration on Oct. 15 in Ashburn, Va. Redskins players that call FedEx Field in Landover home, made a special trip to Redskins Park in order to spend a day with twenty women who are currently battling breast cancer.
“It feels really good,” said Redskins safety Reed Doughty. Chris [Cooley] started this a few years ago and I tried to get involved with it as much as I could. I have been doing it for a couple of years now. It feels good to give a day like this to ladies having a hard time, and to make them feel special on that day.”
Each of the women who participated enjoyed lunch with some of their favorite players and had a chance to unwind in an afternoon of pampering support, and celebration. After they finished their meal, former Redskins Tight End Chris Cooley spoke with the audience and spread some insight on how his life was affected by breast cancer. Cooley’s mother was diagnosed with breast cancer when he was a young child and he has made it a point to help others who are fighting the disease.
Cooley talked about how he looked up to his mother for support and inspiration throughout his life. He told how he felt the emotional pain and dealt with the struggles that the family faced as a result of the devastating diagnosis. Cooley said he fought alongside his mother with hopes of overcoming breast cancer.
“Today it is not ultimately about the awareness, it's about the people who are fighting for their life and giving them hope and encouragement,” said Cooley. “My mom always told me to believe in myself and she backed it up by always being there and supporting me. To have a chance to help my mother on the other side of it was really important for me.”
The breast cancer survivors were treated to a personal make-up consultation, massage therapy and the Washington Redskins gave them a private tour of Redskins Park. After the “All-Stars” had a day to remember, they given gift bags. The women were treated to new jeans, wigs, scarves, makeup, a custom-made Redskins Jersey. Tickets were given to the survivors for the game against the Chicago Bears on Oct. 20. The “All Stars” will also visit a “fan tunnel” for player introductions before the game.