Teams raise over $315K at Meadows Turkey Bowl in Medina

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MEDINA, Ohio --  Giving thanks for good health and using your time to help others fight illness, that's what's behind another record for the Meadows Turkey Bowl in Medina.  This year, the teams have raised more than $315,000 to help families fighting cancer and other illnesses in their community.

When you're battling cancer you can sometimes feel alone, but not at the Meadows Turkey Bowl.

The Stillmans are part of a large family of people who want to help.  Cancer took Jack Stillman last year.

Jack left behind a wife and two small boys.  But his family is still part of the team as they continue their lives without Jack.

"When my husband was first diagnosed it wasn't just him getting the diagnosis, it was all of us. My two boys, his sisters, his parents, my parents." Jack's wife Alina Stillman said. "He was and always will be loved. He had a lot of support during his battle and that support has passed on to us."

After more than 20 years, the Meadows Turkey Bowl has moved out of the backyard and onto the big field where it's cold -- the temperature was just around 30 degrees in Medina -- and muddy too.

And, some of the players said they are going to be a little sore the next day.

But that doesn't matter; in fact, there were more teams playing this year because everyone wants to help.

They played for Collin Nemet, a nine-year-old fighting brain cancer.

They played for Paul Desciscio who's dealing with colon cancer.

They played in the memory of John Haney to create a foundation in his honor.

And, they played for Brittany Parker, a young single mom with a five-year-old son who's breast cancer diagnosis has left her unable to work and fighting to get healthy.

"It's hard not to cry. It's hard not to cry when I talk about this because I have my name on a banner behind me and a whole team of people playing for me. It's totally changed my life." Parker said.

Thanksgiving is a time for everyone to count their blessings, but for many people at the Meadows Turkey Bowl, blessings are very simple things -- good health, good friends, a roaring fire on a cold day and a wish that one day cancer will not affect anymore lives.

However, until then they have football and an extended family of friends who won't let families walk the road alone.

To learn more about the Meadows Turkey Bowl, click here.

Continuing coverage, here.

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