DECATUR, Ala. – A Decatur fishing tournament joined together fishing aficionados and hobby fishermen alike to compete for a cause on Saturday in the Fishing For FAM tournament.
The second annual tournament brought in 25 boats to Ingalls Harbor, all with the goal to raise money for the childhood illness nonprofit Fighting All Monsters. The event was hosted by 13-year-old Mady Kelsoe.
“We have giveaways and different prizes, and of course whoever wins gets the prize money, but i’ll be giving everybody that,” Kelsoe said.
Mady is fighting neuroblastoma for the fifth time in six years. She said a fishing tournament was a great way to incorporate one of her family’s favorite hobbies, while also raising awareness for an underfunded group of cancer warriors.
“I mean it’s heard of but not a lot of people speak about it as they go about their day, and I think it’s really important to get the word out there because it is a thing and it is real,” Kelsoe said.
Mady’s mom, Ashley Kelsoe, has been volunteering with FAM for two years, and said they have helped her family and others get through emotionally and financially tough times.
“After each relapse they kind of try to help the families as much as they can, just to kind of help them to get back on their feet,” Ashley Kelsoe said. “They are an amazing organization and we just love to be able to do whatever we can to help them.”
While the proceeds will benefit FAM, they also hosted a blood drive. They did for a very important reason.
“Mady just had actually two pints of blood given yesterday and a pint of platelets, so blood drives are a huge thing that we try to do every few months because it’s very important, it’s how they survive a lot of their cancer,” Ashley Kelsoe said.
The family said they plan to make Fishing for FAM a staple fundraising event for years to come. They hope it continues to grow, as this year it brought in double the number of boats as the year before.