Celebration of Life Event to Benefit Children's Hospital of New Mexico

The Third Annual Jeff Apodoca Celebration of Life will be held on Saturday, September 22, at the Albuquerque Marriott Hotel, 2101 Louisiana Blvd. N.E. The evening will begin at 6 p.m. and will feature a silent and live auction, dinner and a special performance by John Vanelli with members of the New Mexico Symphony Orchestra.

The event celebrates 23 years of living cancer free for former Children's Hospital patient Jeff Apodoca, son of former New Mexico governor Jerry Apodoca and wife Clara. In October 1979, Jeff was only the ninth person in the world diagnosed with a rare form of cancer that attacked the soft muscle.

Apodoca's battle with cancer prompted him to start the Celebration of Life and help give other children who are battling the disease hope for the future.

Proceeds from the benefit will go to the Pediatric Oncology Department at Children's Hospital and help fund the Pediatric Oncology Computer and Entertainment Center.

Ryan Nanez, a cancer survivor who was treated at Children's Hospital of New Mexico, will receive the Jeff Apodoca Celebration of Life Award a $2,500 scholarship to fund Nanez' college education at a New Mexico university of his choice.

Honorary patrons of the event are UNM President William Gordon and Mrs. Kathy Gordon and the Honorable Bill Richardson and Mrs. Barbara Richardson. Sponsors include: Platinum Equity Holdings, Intel, KPMG, Mucci and Lagnese, Bastion Capital Corporation, Simmons Radio Group, Telacu, Susan and Nick Franklin, Madison Technology Systems, Inc., The Learning Company, Marriott Corporation, Chevron, Dillard's and Que Milagro of Old Mesilla.

Children's Hospital is the largest pediatric facility in New Mexico and provides the most advanced and comprehensive pediatric and neonatal care.

Contact: HSC Public Affairs, 272-3322

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