Shorty Koger and Rein In Cancer are very proud and excited to announce that they have finally reached their longtime goal of raising a half a million dollars for the Shirley Bowman Nutritional Clinic at the OU Cancer Institute in Oklahoma City.
After years of organizing fundraising events at the AQHA World Show, All American Quarter Horse Congress, NRHA Futurity and Derby, March To The Arch, Arizona Sun Circuit, NRCHA Futurity and Derby, and National Reining Breeders Classic, the $500,000 endowment total will insure that Shirley Bowman’s name will forever remain on the record books as the honoree of the endowment.
For Shorty Koger, who first began raising money in memory of her sister, Shirley Bowman, in 2006, this achievement will serve as a fitting reminder of her sister’s memory.
“The whole purpose of starting all of this was to help cancer patients who didn’t have the insurance to pay for their treatments,” Koger says. “My sister didn’t have health insurance, and I wanted to find a way to help others who didn’t have heath insurance either. I spoke to a bunch of different people on how to guide me on how to do this with fundraising. Then, a lady came into my shop, Tracie Anderson, who is the clinical director at OU, and we decided to start an endowment in my sister’s name.”
“I had $13,000 that I gave her, which I had made from selling cancer hats, like my sister used to wear, and taking a part of the proceeds and putting that in a savings account. From there we kept growing, and now every year we have a large fundraiser at the Congress where we participate with Lagrange Leather and the Congress Queens Contest. This past year they helped to raise $175,000 of this money.”
Fundraising events that took place during the 2010 All American Quarter Horse Congress were a big part of helping Koger and Rein In Cancer to reach their ultimate goal. One of the main events was an auction of donated items, which took place during the Equine Chronicle Masters classes at the show. An integral part of this event involved the participation of Babs Bryant of Lagrange Leather, who specially designed the 2010 Ribbon of Life cancer boot, and the Congress Queens, who helped by selling raffle tickets for the chance to win a pair of the custom boots.
Another fundraising event that took place at the 2010 AQHA World Show, was the “Take Aim At Cancer” frisbee toss, where participants tried their best to toss pink frisbees into the bed of a 2011 Ford Super Duty Lariat Truck, for the chance to win a custom hat from Shorty’s Caboy Hattery.
“We have done a lot of fundraisers and the horse people have been a big part of that,” Koger says. That is where it all comes from. I would like to express my gratitude to the people within the horse industry who have helped in so many different ways.
“According to the OU Cancer Institute, when we reached a total of $500,000, my sister’s name will be on the endowment forever. It will always be there to help people with cancer who don’t have the insurance to cover their treatments.”
The Rein In Cancer charity was first developed in 2007 by Shorty Koger, Cheryl Magoteaux of Pro Management Inc. and Tracie Anderson of the OU Cancer Institute. All three of these ladies have been personally affected by cancer. Both Shorty and Cheryl had sisters who had cancer and both Kroger and Anderson’s husband are cancer survivors.
The efforts of these three women, in addition to countless supporters within the horse industry, have ensured that there will forever be a Shirley Bowman Nutritional Clinic to provide proper nutrition to every cancer patient seen at the OU Cancer Institute.
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