Wednesday, February 3, 2016



Light The Night ‘Honored Hero’ Zach Meredith & Dayton
Campaign Manager Karen Carter for the Tri-State Southern Ohio LLS chapter.
DAYTON, Ohio – Young leukemia survivor Zach Meredith can be a little shy in front of the crowds he meets serving as a Leukemia & Lymphoma Society “Honored Hero,” but he always charms them with his million-dollar smile. At the Light The Night Awards Party Jan. 27 in Beavercreek it was a $310,000 smile in celebration of the money raised by the 2015 Dayton Light The Night walk for the cause of fighting blood cancers.

Zach is now a sixth-grader at Springboro Intermediate School. He was diagnosed with T-cell acute lymphoblastic leukemia in 2011. After enduring painful tumors and chemotherapy treatments he was declared cancer free prior to leading his team at the October 2015 LTN walk. He will also serve as the “Young Man of the Year” ambassador for the 2016 Dayton Man and Woman of the Year LLS fundraiser.

The award party was a night to celebrate another year of exceeding the fundraising goal and raising the bar for the Dayton Light The Night. “In 2011 we raised about $104,000 and in 2015 it was $310,000,” said Dayton Campaign Manager Karen Carter for the Tri-State Southern Ohio LLS chapter. “You should be massively, massively proud!”

The 2014 Dayton Light The Night raised $258,809, including a record contribution of $76,372 by the Community Blood Center/Community Tissue Services team with CEO Dr. David Smith serving as the executive committee chairman. LLS set a goal of $283,000 for the 2015 LTN, and that was easily passed thanks to the efforts of 2015 executive committee chairman Donnie Hill, who was diagnosed with a chronic form of lymphoma (CLL/SLL) in 2008 and continues to undergo treatment.

“Without you we don’t have a chance,” he told the award party crowd. “It’s easy for me to come to speak because I’m fighting for my life. We’re winning this battle but unfortunately we’re still losing some people along the way.”

Donnie personally raised $27,385 for the 2015 LTN walk to win the executive challenge and his company Precision Manufacturing Company, Inc. raised $48,954 to win the LTN top corporate team award. “Every year you’re helping beat blood cancer, and you’re helping beat many other cancers,” he said. “Your money goes to cures.”

The CBC/CTS team was the second place corporate team with $42,572 raised for LTN in 2015. In the last two years CBC/CTS has raised $118,944 for Light the Night. “You are by far the biggest fundraising team in the history of our chapter,” said Karen.

The “Remember the Fallen – Fight the War(ner)” team was the top Friends and Family team with $15,459 raised for the LTN, followed by the “Always Friends” team with $6,775.

The Southern Ohio region, with walks in Dayton and Cincinnati, combined to raise $980,000 to help find cures for blood cancers and provide patient support. The 2016 Dayton Light The Night walk will be Sept. 29 at the Fraze Pavilion in Kettering. The Cincinnati Light The Night will follow on Oct. 13.

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