The second annual Jamie Chapin Classic golf tournament benefiting University of Florida (UF) Health brain cancer research took place on Saturday, March 17, at the Lagoon Course of the Ponte Vedra Inn & Club.
The event hosted by the UF lacrosse team honored former Nease and UF lacrosse star Jamie Chapin, who passed away at age 25 after battling brain cancer. In addition to golf, guests enjoyed live music, hot dogs, burgers, green spirits in honor of St. Patrick’s Day, a silent auction and more at the event, which also featured a hospitality tent for attendees. All proceeds benefited UF Health's Brain Cancer Immunotherapy Program.
Deb Chapin, Jamie's mother, said the event was more successful than she had anticipated.
"We're very excited about the enthusiasm, and we're really hopeful," she said. "We know next year it's going to be even bigger."
Events such as the Jamie Chapin Classic make a real impact and bring people together, Chapin added, because communal events offer an opportunity for groups to collaborate and share information.
"Normally people want to own the research and own the cure," Chapin added. "At this point, if we're going to have a cure or some kind of treatment, it has to be collaborative. This specific event is raising awareness, but our bigger goal is literally to create that collaboration."
Chapin commended Dr. Duane Mitchell, co-director of the Preston A. Wells Jr. Center for Brain Tumor Therapy at UF, for collaborating with other experts and working to improve current medical procedures related to the treatment of brain cancer. Mitchell, who attended the Classic and spoke to attendees about UF’s brain cancer research, is the director of the UF Brain Tumor Immunotherapy Program and a Phyllis Kottler Friedman Professor in the department of neurosurgery, among other distinctions.
"We just appreciate that he stays in the game," Chapin said. "That's a really tough place to be. They don't quit; they keep going."