The Ken Pribil Jr. Foundation raised $10,000 to support angiosarcoma research at its Cocktails & Belmont III event on Saturday at RJ Daniel’s.
The “Evening at the Races” benefit was the first held in three years because of the Covid-19 pandemic. Attendees took part in race-themed activities leading up to the 154th running of the Belmont Stakes. Funds raised will go toward the Ken Pribil Jr. Sarcoma Research Grant, which will honor Dr. Cristina Antonescu and her team at Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center.
The funds fulfill the organization’s mission of commemorating the life of Kenny Pribil Jr., a 19-year-old from Rockville Centre who died from angiosarcoma in 2006, through annual grants that support sarcoma cancer research.
“This was our first in-person event in the past three years and it was a massive success,” said Kevin Pribil, the foundation’s president of the Board of Directors and a 2009 South Side High School graduate. “We were so grateful to see our family, friends and supporters come together face-to-face to stand up to cancer. People have continued to battle cancer amid the pandemic, and it is critical we maintain awareness and support research efforts. We are proud to continue our partnership with Dr. Cristina Antonescu and her team at Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center as they continue their research on angiosarcoma cancer and identify therapeutic targets.”
The benefit featured a presentation from Mary Reed-Holman, the corporate and foundation relations officer for Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center, regarding the research being done by Antonescu and how partnerships from foundations are making a difference in the field of angiosarcoma research. She shared an article that Antonescu and her team published in the Journal for Immunotherapy of Cancer, which is an in-depth analysis of angiosarcoma patients who had been treated with immune checkpoint blockade inhibitors (a medication that stimulates the body’s immune system). The research found that nearly 40 percent of patients derived a clinical benefit from the treatment.
Two South Side High School seniors were recipients of the 2022 Ken Pribil Jr. Scholarship, and will receive $1,000 toward their college expenses.
“We are very thankful to the corporate sponsors and families that have supported our foundation by contributing goods and services to the raffle at our event,” foundation board member Daniela Catuogno said.
“This generous support has been inspiring and we look forward to continuing these partnerships as we fulfill our mission in years to come.”