Tonight’s 6th annual Dick Vitale Gala at the Ritz Carlton in Sarasota, Florida, is attracting huge names in the sports world, including athletes, coaches and commentators. Among the well-known faces expected to drop by the event, which benefits pediatric cancer research, are Jim Calhoun, John Calipari, Christian Laettner, Roy Williams, Erin Andrews, Desmond Howard, Jon Gruden, Gary Sheffield, Dave Cowens, Vince Carter, Tubby Smith and Gary Williams, USA Today reports.
“Cancer comes after you whether you are rich, poor, black, white, Christian or Jewish. It brings you to your knees,” said Vitale. “My life has been blessed and it is my time to give back. I’m 71 and there is no greater feeling than to bring a smile to a child’s face.”
This year’s event will honor Lucy Weber, 18 months; Johnny Teis, 8 and Adrian Littlejohn, 15 months, who all died in the past 12 months.
“The event is sold out at $1,000 a person but we are still looking for help in our battle against cancer,” said Vitale. “Anyone who wants to contribute can call 1-800-4JimmyV or by going to dickvitaleonline.com.”