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Penn State Uplifting Athletes "Lift For Life" Again Breaks Record With $140,000 To Benefit Kidney Cancer Association

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Penn State Uplifting Athletes president and linebacker Ben Kline

July 14, 2014


The 12th Annual Penn State Uplifting Athletes "Lift For Life" was a tremendous success on Saturday, raising the 2014 total to a record $140,000 and the cumulative total to nearly $1 million to benefit the Kidney Cancer Association.

As of Monday morning, Penn State football student-athletes have raised slightly more than $140,000 for kidney cancer patients and awareness this year, with additional donations expected this month. More than 100 members of Coach James Franklin's squad participated in Saturday's Lift For Life, breaking their record for the sixth consecutive year, surpassing the 2013 event total of $133,506 for the Kidney Cancer Association.

With the $140,000 in contributions from this year, more than $990,000 has been raised in the battle against rare diseases by Penn State Uplifting Athletes since the inaugural Lift For Life was held in 2003. The inaugural event raised just under $13,000. The last four Penn State Lift For Life events have all raised in excess of $100,000, pushing the cumulative total to the brink of $1 million.

Contributions to Penn State Uplifting Athletes in the fight against kidney cancer for 2013-14 will be accepted through September 30. Fans can make a Lift For Life donation by visiting the Penn State Uplifting Athletes donation page at: ‪ ...

"We all work really hard on it," said junior linebacker Ben Kline (Seven Valleys), president of Penn State's Uplifting Athletes Chapter. "It's something we take a lot of pride in and really enjoy doing. It's a great opportunity for us to give back and the players get behind it. We're nearing the $1 million mark raised for kidney cancer patients and their families. That's a huge testament to what we do here at Penn State and how seriously we take giving back to others."



The Penn State Lift For Life was held outdoors at the Penn State Lacrosse Field for the third consecutive year, with approximately 2,500 fans in attendance. The offense posted a 30-24 victory over the defense during the seven strength and conditioning competitions, The competitions included a 225-pound bench max, dead lift, sled push, tire flip, shuttle, tug run and the tug of war. The defense won two of the three tug-of-war battles to conclude the event.

The 2014 Penn State Lift For Life included a kids clinic for the first time, which was run by the Nittany Lion freshmen football student-athletes. The event concluded with an autograph session with team. Members of the Penn State men's basketball and women's volleyball teams attended the event to support Penn State football. Uplifting Athletes also partnered with the State College Spikes at last Friday's game.

AAA of South Central Pennsylvania, Best Event Rentals, Dietz & Watson, B94.5, Centre Daily Times, ESPN Radio 1450/Forever Broadcasting, and WTAJ-TV were the primary sponsors and media partners for the 2014 Penn State Lift For Life. Additional sponsors and partners included Michael Shimko Memorial Golf Classic, Family Clothes Line, Learfield Sports, Penn State men's basketball, State College Spikes, Lancaster Barnstormers and Willie Family Scarves.

In addition, the Success With Honor organization coordinated all the volunteers at the Penn State Lift For Life.

The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has approved eight new therapies for the treatment of kidney cancer in the U.S. since the first Lift For Life in 2003. The Kidney Cancer Association has credited the Penn State Lift For Life as being a catalyst for the new treatments, according to Scott Shirley, Uplifting Athletes Executive Director.

Founded by Penn State Football teammates Scott Shirley, Dave Costlow and Damone Jones in 2003, Lift For Life has continued to build awareness and raise funds for the Kidney Cancer Association. The event is organized by Penn State Football Uplifting Athletes, whose members are on the Penn State football team, led this year by Kline, president of the chapter. Joining Kline as chapter officers are: vice president - running back Deron Thompson (Lititz); secretary - tight end Adam Breneman (Mechanicsburg); director of marketing - tight end Jesse James (Glassport); compliance manager - running back Akeel Lynch (Toronto, Ontario, Canada) and director of fundraising - tight end Brent Wilkerson (Clinton, Md.). Former football squad members and current Penn State students Joe Marvin (Treasurer) and Bryce Wilson (director of operations) also are officers.

About Uplifting Athletes: Uplifting Athletes is a full-service national nonprofit organization aligning college football with rare diseases and raising them as a national priority through research, outreach, education and advocacy. What makes Uplifting Athletes unique is that the university chapters are run by current football student-athletes, providing them with an opportunity to gain management and leadership skills while learning how to leverage their assets and abilities to make a positive and lasting impact.

Uplifting Athletes Chapters are: Penn State, Arizona, Baylor, Boston College, Clemson, Colgate, Florida State, Fordham, Georgetown, Illinois, Maryland, Nebraska, NC State, Nothwestern, Notre Dame, Ohio State, Princeton, Saint Francis (PA), South Carolina, Stony Brook, Syracuse, Virginia, Washington and Wisconsin. Each chapter adopts one out of approximately 7,000 rare diseases (such as ALS, Aplastic Anemia, CMT, cystic fibrosis, Ehlers-Danlos, Ewing's Sarcoma, Kidney Cancer, Leukemia, MS, Neimann Pick Type-C, Neuroblastoma, pancreatic cancer, etc.).


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