Most of the time, it’s professional athletes who pledge to raise money for charity with each home run, three-pointer or touchdown scored. But, Miles Tillman, a high school kicker, realizes that he doesn’t have to be playing at the highest level to make a difference in the community.
Tillman, who attends Sparkman High School in Harvest, Alabama, is raising money for cancer research with each field goal he makes this season.
He’s calling his fundraiser Kicking Out Cancer, which falls under Alex’s Lemonade Stand Foundation, an organization dedicated to raising money for research into new treatments and cures for children battling cancer.
“Every field goal or extra point I make, somebody can pledge a certain amount of money,” Tillman told WHNT.
His goal for the season is to boot 30 extra points and raise $1,000 for the cause. Just one game into the 10-week long season at the time of this writing, he has nailed three extra points and raised $45.
Tillman decided to launch the fundraising page after attending a summer football camp where he talked with representatives from Alex’s Lemonade Stand.
The catalyst for the foundation was a front yard lemonade stand started by 4-year-old Alex, who was diagnosed with neuroblastoma before her first birthday. That particular stand raised $2,000 for childhood cancer research, and by the time Alex passed away in 2004, she raised more than $1 million.
It’s no wonder Tillman was drawn to the charity after learning about its backstory.
“It just gives me another reason to come out here and do my best every night,” he said.
If Tillman reaches his $1,000 goal, it will help pay for two days worth of cancer research.
“It’s heartwarming. That’s Miles,” his coach, Laron White, said. “He’s a great kid. He plays soccer, he plays football. He kicks all the time.”
And now he’s the one helping to kick cancer to the curb. That’s worthy of an all-state selection if you ask me.