Chillin’ for Chase fundraiser planned

HOPE — Those who supported 2-year-old Chase Galbraith in his brave fight against acute myloid leukemia are continuing to honor his memory by raising money to help other children with the same diagnosis.

This year’s Chillin’ for Chase’s Comrades Annual Chicken Noodle Dinner is planned from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. Feb. 6 at Hope Moravian Church. The event features dinner and a fundraising auction, with proceeds used to help buy supplies for patients in the hematology/oncology floor at Riley Children’s Hospital in Indianapolis.

Chase received care at Riley after he was diagnosed with AML on Christmas Eve in 2012. He died Dec. 21, 2013, and his funeral was on what would have been his third birthday, Dec. 27, 2013.

Since Chase’s death, family and friends have gathered to remember him and to help other children undergoing treatment at Riley, said Sara Galbraith, Chase’s aunt, a Central Middle School language arts teacher in Columbus.

Some patients who were at the hospital when Chase was there come to the Chillin’ event each year, Galbraith said.

“We stay connected,” she said. “It was so sad when we lost Chase, but we got connected to everyone.”

Money is not the main focus of the fundraising event, although funds raised through the free-will offering for the meal and the auction will be used to buy snacks and other items for Riley leukemia patients.

Galbraith explained that the unit where Chase was treated had to cut out snacks that had been offered to patients and they wouldn’t be available unless they were donated.

“To some people, it might be just a little package of cookies. But after a long day of treatment, it’s very therapeutic to get little things like a snack,” she said. “It’s just knowing we’re giving the kids something that makes their day better in a really bad situation.”

About 20 or 30 volunteers help put on the event each year, and Cortney Galbraith, Chase’s mother, is seeking donations for the dessert auction, food for the dinner or any other assistance that might be offered.

Those who attend also are asked to wear orange, the color for leukemia awareness.

“As the years go on, we want to make sure that everyone remembers Chase,” she said.

If you go

What: Chillin’ for Chase’s Comrades Annual Chicken Dinner in memory of Chase Galbraith

When: 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. Feb. 6

Where: Hope Moravian Church, 202 Main St., Hope

Cost: Free-will donation for the dinner; fundraising auction and a dessert auction are planned.

For more information or to volunteer to help or donate items, call Cortney Galbraith at 812-546-4064 or 812-371-0962.

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Julie McClure is assistant managing editor of The Republic. She can be reached at jmcclure@therepublic.com or (812) 379-5631.