NASHVILLE, Tenn., April 26, 2019 /PRNewswire/ -- St. Jude Children's Research Hospital® patient Owen will be a special guest of the National Football League (NFL) when he announces the Seattle Seahawks' round three draft pick onstage on Friday evening, April 26, in Nashville, Tennessee. Former NFL MVP running back Shaun Alexander will join Owen onstage to raise awareness of the St. Jude mission: Finding cures. Saving children.®
"The NFL is a longtime partner of St. Jude, providing incredibly memorable experiences for our patients and families each year through opportunities like the NFL Draft and for kids to learn how to help other kids through the Play 60 program," said Richard Shadyac Jr., President and CEO of ALSAC, the fundraising and awareness organization for St. Jude Children's Research Hospital. "Owen has an inner strength and determination that should be admired, and we are honored that the NFL has invited him to represent St. Jude at the Draft to support all of the children fighting cancer and other life-threatening diseases."
Owen was diagnosed at four years old with acute lymphoblastic leukemia (ALL). Owen spent two and a half years battling ALL and his love for football and running began immediately after he completed treatment in 2012. Now at 13, Owen is proud to be cancer-free and can even complete a 5:36 mile. He is a proud Seattle Seahawks fan, which he attributes to the influence of his "favorite" uncle who resides in Seattle.
"I'm so excited to attend the NFL Draft and can't wait to get to Nashville to make the round three pick for my favorite team, the Seattle Seahawks," said Owen. "It will be an amazing experience to be part of the draft, so I'm thankful for both St. Jude and the NFL for giving me this incredible opportunity."
The complete story of Owen's St. Jude journey is featured in a new piece on St. Jude Inspire, titled "Fast forward: A two-sport athlete, Owen is on course for success."
St. Jude and the NFL's partnership spans more than seven years and includes the NFL PLAY 60 program and Run Rich Run. These fundraising programs help patients and families cope with serious illnesses through play therapy, peer interaction and more. The combined efforts are instrumental in creating support and awareness for the lifesaving mission of St. Jude while also providing patients with unique experiences at various NFL events.
The NFL Draft kicks off from Nashville at 8 p.m. EDT on Thursday, April 25, and will air live on the NFL Network, ESPN, ABC and online at NFL.com/Watch.
To learn more about St. Jude and the NFL, visit stjude.org/nfl.
About St. Jude Children's Research Hospital®
St. Jude Children's Research Hospital is leading the way the world understands, treats and defeats childhood cancer and other life-threatening diseases. Its purpose is clear: Finding cures. Saving children.® It is the only National Cancer Institute-designated Comprehensive Cancer Center devoted solely to children. Treatments invented at St. Jude have helped push the overall childhood cancer survival rate from 20 percent to more than 80 percent since the hospital opened more than 50 years ago. St. Jude won't stop until no child dies from cancer. St. Jude freely shares the discoveries it makes, and every child saved at St. Jude means doctors and scientists worldwide can use that knowledge to save thousands more children. Families never receive a bill from St. Jude for treatment, travel, housing or food ? because all a family should worry about is helping their child live. Join the St. Jude mission by visiting stjude.org, sharing stories and videos from St. Jude Inspire, liking St. Jude on Facebook, following St. Jude on Twitter and Instagram and subscribing to its YouTube channel.
SOURCE ALSAC/St. Jude Children's Research Hospital
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