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When Thomas Jefferson High School students Emma Martinis and Olivia Supp met with the West Jefferson Hills School Board in late January, they had a goal in mind.

The TJ juniors had been nominated for the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society’s Student of the Year program and their goal was, for their team “Team 4 THE CURE,” to raise $30,000 from early February until the April 1 deadline, a period of just seven weeks.

 

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Pictured (L to R) Olivia Supp, Garrett Little, Emma Martinis at the 2-mile/5K Fun Run (Photo Credit - Martinis family)
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Pictured (L to R) Olivia Supp, Garrett Little, Emma Martinis at the 2-mile/5K Fun Run (Photo Credit - Martinis family)

A campaign that consumed multiple hours each day, sometimes more than eight hours, and involved outreach to more than 100 businesses and hundreds of community members ended with a spectacular finish as Team 4 THE CURE raised $82,067.17 for the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society (LLS).

“It was so surprising; it’s just crazy,” Olivia said of the fund-raising total. “We’re so grateful; the community was awesome. Everyone has been so supportive and we’re so thankful.”

“The community really helped us,” Emma echoed. “I’m so proud of how it turned out. It was great seeing the community come together.”

Among the 19 Student of the Year teams in greater Pittsburgh, they raised a cumulative total of $830,915 for LLS. Team 4 THE CURE was among the top five fundraising teams.

Emma and Olivia, who are captains on the TJ girls soccer team, had been nominated last fall by TJ senior Hailey Krawczyk, who had participated with classmate Ella Radakovich in 2021.

“Olivia and I decided to apply to the Student of the Year program about one week before Scarlett was diagnosed,” Martinis said. “She soon became our ‘Why?’”

WJH Students Scarlett and Garrett Provide Inspiration

Scarlett Rundquist is a fourth grade student at Jefferson Hills Intermediate School. She was diagnosed with leukemia last fall and the JHIS and WJH communities have rallied around her, including the TJ vs. Cancer club selling “Support for Scarlett” T-shirts, with all proceeds going to her family. Scarlett is

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