By Lisa Miller
Last week, the clubhouse at The Trails Apartment was decked out in all pink as Dallas United Crew’s PINK Breast Cancer Survivor dragon boat team welcomed new members and hosted the kick-off to their third racing season. What makes this season different than the rest? This season, the team plans to race this summer in Florence, Italy in the International BCS Dragon Boat Festival.
To help raise funds for the trip, the PINK team partnered with local entrepreneur Tony Palmer, founder of TropicSport mineral sunscreen and skin care, which launched earlier this year. Tony was on hand to present a check toward the team’s Italy trip. Funds were raised through TropicSport’s affinity program, which donates proceeds back to non-profits and local community organizations.
“I’m thrilled to have a part in making your trip possible,” Palmer told the team. “You are an inspiration of what survivorship looks like.” In an emotional moment, Palmer shared his personal cancer journey for the first time publicly. “As a lymphoma survivor myself, I know what is it is like to have a doctor tell you, ‘you have six months to live.’ I’m in full remission now, yet I was concerned about the negative impact that chemical sunscreens can have on the planet and on people. That was a big inspiration for starting TropicSport.”
“I think it was a surprise to all of us,” says Debbie Kehoe, PINK paddler and 22-year survivor. “I knew that the active chemicals in mainstream sunscreen were harmful to the reefs and marine life, but what I didn’t know is that these chemicals are also hormone disruptors — creating havoc on our bodies and enabling cancer to grow. That’s really scary!” Kehoe explained. “We’re grateful to partner with Tony and TropicSport because it helps us in more ways than one — helps us raise funds for our team and protects us from the bad stuff in some other sunscreens!”
Dallas United PINK dragon boat practices are in full swing getting ready for the upcoming racing season. The team will be heading to Florence, Italy in just a few months. If you are a survivor or know someone who is, Dallas United PINK is for you.
Come join them on White Rock Lake on Saturday mornings from 8-10 a.m. and don’t forget to wear sunscreen.