Dr. Earle Sullivan of Mint Hill Dentistry joined a team to raise money for pediatric cancer research by hiking the Foothills Trail along the Appalachian Mountains. Team Mint Hill is hiking for the CureSearch Charlotte event, and includes Sullivan, his wife Leigh Hutchinson, Jean Kreisher, and Sue Johnson.
The hike is a $10,000 commitment. Those who sign up hand over a credit card to be charged if fundraising does not reach the goal. Team Mint Hill has already passed their goal, and the CureSearch Charlotte hike has reached $120,000 so far.
Sullivan said all the doctors in the dentistry complex have been very generous. Team members are raising money and hiking 28.3 miles in the Appalachian mountains, starting around the South Carolina-Georgia border.
“It’s not really about hiking the miles, it’s about raising the money,” Sullivan said. It’s about making a difference.
The team is dedicating its hike in memory of Claire Ratliff and in honor of Grier Cristenbury. The Ratliff family lost Claire to neuroblastoma when she was just two. Grier is only five and is fighting cancer.
CureSearch is streamlined, ensuring 95 percent of money raised goes to research. The organization provides a databank that has become most helpful in finding clinical trials and treatments for specific situations.
Team Mint Hill will continue to raise money for their hike until June, but donations are always being accepted by CureSearch.
“When Americans put enough time and enough money at a problem and focus on it, they come up with solutions,” said Hutchinson.