Hartford, Conn. - It is nearly impossible to find anyone whose life has not been touched by cancer, whether it is through a friend, family member, or even a teammate. The swimmers and divers at Trinity College have found one more way to fight back: the sixth annual Ted Mullin "Leave It in the Pool" Hour of Power Relay for Sarcoma Research took place on Tuesday, November 8, 2011.
The Bantam men and women, coached by Kristen Noone, joined thousands of athletes from collegiate, high school, and club teams across the nation and abroad in the 2011 "Hour of Power" event, honoring those who are fighting or have succumbed to cancer, including former Carleton swimmer Edward H. "Ted" Mullin, who passed away from synovial sarcoma, a rare soft-tissue cancer, in September 2006.
"It was another successful Hour of Power for the Bantams in their sixth year of participation," said Noone. "We had a moment of silence before the event for our team to remember those for which they were swimming. Our divers participated in the swim right alongside the swimmers, our assistant coach swam with the team (and felt their pain), and we had a few guest appearances from some friends of team members."
Over 151 teams and more than 7,200 athletes registered for the 2011 "Hour of Power" Relay, including 105 collegiate swimming programs from 39 conferences and NCAA Divisions I, II and III, and three independents. In addition, 46 club, high-school and student-abroad teams took part.
The event—held in Trinity's home pool—was a one-hour, all-out, leave-it-in-the-pool practice consisting of continuous relays, using any stroke. First held on Nov. 7, 2006 in memory of Mullin, the "Hour of Power" Relay has grown from 15 teams the first year to 146 teams in 2010.
A primary goal of the event is to raise awareness and generate funds for research conducted at the University of Chicago into finding treatments and cures for sarcoma, the type of soft-tissue cancer that took the life of Ted Mullin and afflicts the lives of many young people. All teams are invited to get involved in the "Hour of Power" whether or not they decide to raise funds. Since the event began five years ago, participants have raised more than $265 thousand for the Ted Mullin Fund for Pediatric Sarcoma Research at the Comer Children's Hospital at the University of Chicago where Ted received treatment. The "Hour of Power" also aims to promote team spirit and to generate awareness of sarcoma, a rare cancer that disproportionately affects adolescents and young adults.
Funds raised during the event act as seed funding for U of C's pediatric sarcoma research program. The program brings together oncologists, surgeons, radiation oncologists and physician scientists who have a particular interest in adolescents and young adults with sarcoma, allowing collaborative efforts in the identification of the causes of sarcoma at the most basic molecular and cellular levels.