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Sept. 19, 2014


COLUMBIA, S.C. – University of South Carolina head men’s basketball coach Frank Martin joined over 650 cancer patients, advocates, survivors, caregivers and their families, along with staff from the American Cancer Society and fellow head coaches Mark Turgeon (Maryland) and Phil Martelli (Saint Joseph’s) in Washington, D.C., this week, as the ACS Cancer Action Network (CAN) hosted its annual Leadership Summit and Lobby Day. Martin and his fellow coaches support cancer research through the “Coaches vs. Cancer” initiative, a nationwide collaboration between the ACS and the National Association of Basketball Coaches.

Cancer Lobby Day is held to urge lawmakers to protect funding for cancer research and prevention programs, support legislation that supports patients’ quality of life and to eliminate a cost barrier to Medicare beneficiaries trying to access lifesaving colon cancer screenings.

Martin and his fellow coaches rallied the group prior to their trip to Capitol Hill to speak with lawmakers. Each coach shared his personal story and connection to cancer before rallying the volunteers. Martin then joined the group of survivors and loved ones, along with the ACS CAN, and visited lawmakers to talk about the importance of cancer research and funding.

“It was so exciting for the American Cancer Society to ask Anya and me to be part of the Cancer Lobby Day on Capitol Hill,” Martin said. “Being around ACS volunteers and cancer survivors was a tremendous experience.”

The Martins have held a gala, the “B-Ball of the South,” the last two years in Columbia, in support of “Coaches vs. Cancer.” The event has been a fantastic success, raising $269,470 in its two years to benefit the initiative.