***Media Advisory*** Man to row across Lake Michigan for childhood cancer research

Sen. John Proos, Mandarino family to join rower Jacob Beckley for press conference in advance of launch

ST. JOSEPH, Mich. — Sen. John Proos has announced that he will be joined by rower Jacob Beckley and the Mandarino family at press conference on Thursday afternoon at the St. Joseph Junior Foundation Sailing School.

Beckley will launch a handmade boat on Sunday from St. Joseph and row to Chicago as a fundraiser for childhood cancer research. He will begin his 65-mile journey across Lake Michigan in the evening as advised by the U.S. Coast Guard.

Proos will present Beckley with a copy of a proclamation declaring September as Childhood Cancer Awareness Month in Michigan.

Also available for comment will be Tony and Katie Mandarino, St. Joseph natives whose son Alex passed away from neuroblastoma at age five. In 2013, they founded the Alex Mandarino Foundation to raise money for pediatric cancer research.

Sen. John Proos, R-St. Joseph; Jacob Beckley; and Tony and Katie Mandarino.

Comments and press availability prior to Beckley’s launch on Sunday.

Thursday, Sept. 29 at 4 p.m.

St. Joseph Junior Foundation Sailing School
7 Lighthouse Lane (just east of the St. Joseph River Yacht Club)
St. Joseph

Proos sponsored Senate Resolution 211, declaring September as Childhood Cancer Awareness Month in Michigan. The resolution honors the strength of the families of children who suffer from cancer and the ability of many such families to turn their grief into positive action for other children.

In the U.S. in 2016, an estimated 10,380 new cases of cancer will be diagnosed among children from birth to age 14. Through advances in research, pediatric cancer death rates have declined by nearly 70 percent over the past four decades, but cancer still remains the leading cause of death from disease among children.