Feb. 7, 2011
BERKELEY - On Sunday, Feb. 6, roughly 1,000 people honored a request made by late Cal coxswain Jill Costello by participating in the second annual Jog for Jill. The event - a 5K run/walk sponsored by the Bonnie J. Addario Lung Cancer Foundation to raise funds for lung cancer research - fulfilled Jill's desire to have a yearly walk in her honor.
"It was amazing to see so many student-athletes come out for Jog for Jill," junior women's swimmer Shelley Harper said. "My entire team was there and it was just really great to get together to celebrate Jill's life and support her dream to 'Beat Lung Cancer.'"
The walk started and ended in Sproul Plaza on the Cal campus with student-athletes representing all 27 Cal teams in attendance in addition to other Berkeley students and community members. Following the walk, there was a celebration of Jill's life.
"It was a nice way to give back," women's soccer sophomore goalkeeper Lauren Hein said. "We got to support our fellow Bears, hang out with the Cal community and raise money for an important charity."
Near the end of her life, Costello became involved with the Bonnie J. Addario Lung Cancer Foundation (BJALCF), which promotes lung cancer awareness and raises funds to find a cure. She helped raise $50,000 for lung cancer research and rallied 1,000 people for the initial Jog for Jill event that took place on Feb. 7, 2010, which was the largest event in terms of number of people in the history of lung cancer. Per Costello's request, there will be an annual Jog for Jill event every February.
"I did Jog for Jill because it's a really simple way to raise funds and awareness towards a very worthy cause," women's soccer junior defender Danielle Brunache said.
On Sunday, Sept. 12, 5,000 people came together in Golden Gate Park to participate in the Jog for Jill. The event raised approximately $370,000 for lung cancer research.
"It was really neat to see everyone supporting Jill and lung cancer research," junior men's swimmer Issac Howell said. "It was great to see the athletic community come together for such an altruistic and important common goal. A lot of the credit for funds raised by the men's and women's swimming and diving team goes to Shelley Harper for organizing our efforts."
After being diagnosed with the disease on June 6, 2009, Costello remained an active member on the rowing team through the 2010 season, coxing the varsity 8+ to a Pac-10 Championship and a helping the Golden Bears finish second overall at the NCAA Championships. The 2010 Pac-10 Athlete of the Year, Costello graduated last May with a degree in political economy and was named to the Pac-10 All-Academic second team. She accomplished all of this while undergoing 22 chemotherapy sessions and 14 days of radiation treatments.
To find out more about lung cancer, the Bonnie J. Addario Lung Cancer Foundation (BJALCF) and to donate money to the BJALCF, please click here.
Read an article from Sports Illustrated about Jill by clicking here.
Lung Cancer Facts: