Middle Georgia charity teams up with Macon Mayhem for cancer fundraiser

MACON, Georgia (41NBC/WMGT) – In an area dominated by football, you don’t often find fans who are passionate about hockey.

"I’m originally from Philadelphia," Michael Slavin says. "I’ve always been a hockey fan."

Slavin, the director of operations for a childhood cancer charity based in middle Georgia, is planning to use his favorite sport to help a cause close to his heart.

In 2009, his 7-year-old daughter Holly was diagnosed with cancer. She spent almost two years in chemo and radiation treatment.

"My wife and my two kids were up in Atlanta and they always went out and did fun things," Slavin remembers. "Going to the zoo and to the aquarium. We went to the Braves game, all kinds of fun stuff."

But not all the kids there had those opportunities.

"When my wife asked some of the other parents if they wanted to come with us, they said that they didn’t have the money," Slavin says.

That’s how the family’s charity, Radiation Vacation, began.

"We just thought that that was a shame," Slavin says. "These families are so split apart from cancer that they don’t have the funds to be able to do any fun things."

In the last seven years, Radiation Vacation has helped hundreds of families, providing everything from some of the trips Michael mentioned to every-day necessities.

So you’ve got to be wondering.. where does hockey enter into this?

"When the Mayhem came to Macon, I purchased season tickets," Slavin says. "One game while I was here, they were having people try to shoot from center ice to get some kind of a gift certificate of some sort, and I thought, ‘Man that might be a really good fundraiser.’"

During an intermission at the Mayhem’s game on February 20, Michael will attempt to shoot 20 pucks into an empty net from center ice. He’s hoping people will pledge a dollar per puck scored or that businesses will pledge $5 per puck scored.

It won’t be easy.

"It’ll be tough," Slavin says with a smile. "But playing hockey for a long time, I’m fairly certain I can do at least 15."

He just needs you to help him out.

"The Mayhem have been gracious enough to allow our foundation to put on this event," Slavin says. "We would ask for the people in the Macon-metro area to come out and support the Mayhem as well as supporting Radiation Vacation."
The team is offering discount tickets for those interested in supporting Michael. If you’re interested, e-mail him at michael.slavin@radiationvacation.org or contact him through Radiation Vacation’s Facebook page at facebook.com/radiationvacation.