A somewhat overcast Saturday, August 22 did not deter the fourteen yachtsmen and their crew, including 17-year-old Zac Sunderland, the youngest person to circumnavigate the globe, from showing up to participate in the Seventh Annual Jennifer Diamond Celebrity Regatta held at the Del Rey Yacht Club in Marina del Rey.
The funds from this yearly event, sponsored by Alice and Harvey Diamond, go to the Jennifer Diamond Cancer Foundation.
Tragedy struck the Diamonds in 2002 when their young daughter Jennifer died from a rare form of cancer. Before she died, it was her wish that her parents help other cancer victims and she signed the documents creating the Jennifer Diamond Cancer Foundation. The Diamonds have been unrelenting in fulfilling their promise and by the end of this year will have established eight Cancer Resource libraries in hospitals and centers throughout southern California. These inviting resource centers are equipped with books, periodicals, computers, printers, and copiers, giving people free, unlimited access to the latest in research and treatments of this most dread disease. The foundation is now housed in a permanent location in a building in Chatsworth and plans are underway to provide free support programs for cancer patients and their families.
In addition to the amazing young Sunderland, other celebrities attending this event were Kathy Buckley, America’s first hearing-impaired comedienne and two-time cancer survivor, and Khandi Alexander, one of the stars of CSI Miami. She plays Dr. Alex Woods, the most sympathetic coroner who treats the “victims” with the utmost of respect and dignity. Alexander commented, “I have been approached by many organizations to be a spokesperson, but I wanted to be involved in charity work that really matters and makes a difference, and for me, the Jennifer Diamond Cancer Foundation is it, and I plan to be very active and very visual.” When asked if cancer had touched her life, Alexander said, “One of my closest friends died from cancer. He is responsible for taking me out of Queens and onto Broadway. I never knew how much pain he was in because he always had a smile on his face. Frank not only taught me how to live, but also taught me how to die.” Alexander plans to be very active and visual in support of this wonderful organization.
Paul Katz at the helm of “Bravura,” finished first followed by Duncan Cameron (“Trust Me”) and Curt Johnson (“Avet.”) The race culminated with an award ceremony followed by a Skipper’s & Sailor’s party featuring a delicious barbeque.