Football Players Raise Money For Breast Care Screening Program


Three teenage football players from St. Vincent de Paul High School in Petaluma this week donated $300.00 to the Petaluma Health Center to be used for breast cancer screening for women who lack insurance coverage.

The Petaluma youth were inspired by seeing NFL players wearing pink during football games to draw attention to national breast cancer awareness month, and they decided to raise money locally for the cause. They sold pink and white terrycloth wristbands and pink shoelaces to their fellow Mustangs teammates, and placed a donation jar for spectators at the school’s snack stand.

Freshmen George Sammon and Zack Sitchler and sophomore Derrick Murphy presented the money to the nonprofit Petaluma Health Center. The money will be used to launch a new fund earmarked for young women who have high risk factors for breast cancer and don’t qualify for insurance or other forms of payment assistance, said Karen Page, PHC’s Women’s Health Care Coordinator.

“This is the beginning of a new pilot program for us,” said Page. “The contribution came from the kindness of the boys’ hearts so we’re starting something new.”

Debbie Sammon, George’s mother, said watching the NFL players wearing pink opened up a meaningful conversation with her son about how pervasive breast cancer is in the community.

“We live in a high incidence area and the sooner women can find out if they have it the better,” said Debbie Sammon.

She said the athletes were surprised by the grateful reception they received at Petaluma Health Center, and they’ve already begun talking about other fundraisers they could organize to bring in additional money for screening mammograms.

“They never realized what a huge impact they could make,” said Sammon. “It’s amazing if you give the kids a little support, something like this can take off.

For more information about the new fund or to make a donation,
contact PHC Community Relations Director Holly Butler
at 559-7696 or by email at

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