2nd Annual Willie Colon Charity Golf Outing Raises Money for Lupus Research

Ines Martins, PhD avatar

by Ines Martins, PhD |

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The Alliance for Lupus Research (ALR) partnered with Willie Colon, the former New York Jets offensive guard, for the second Annual Willie Colon Charity Golf Outing fundraiser benefitting the ALR Jean Davis Research Grant. Money raised at the event is used to further ALR-targeted research efforts.

Other former National Football League players who attended the May 23 outing at the  Hudson National Golf Club in New York included Nick Mangold, D’Brickashaw Ferguson, Ryan Fitzpatrick, Ray Lucas, Gregory Murphy, Max Starks, and Geno Smith. Participants had the opportunity to golf with former and current Jets players and have their photos taken. The event also included an award presentation and auction, and concluded with a dinner.

Colon, whose mother has systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE), or lupus, created the Jean Davis Research Grant in her name and is an advocate for greater research efforts into new disease treatments.

“Watching my mother deal with the uncertainties of lupus, not knowing specifically what she was dealing with and being in and out of the hospital; it’s really difficult,” Colon said in a press release. ” The ALR are really leading the charge with researching the disease and now that we know more about lupus, I feel like the future is looking promising to helping people who have it.  I’m 100% on the team.”

The first golf outing, in September 2015, raised more than $100,000, a separate ALR release reported.

ALR is a nationwide voluntary organization dedicated to finding better treatments, and ultimately a cure, for SLE. Since 1999, the group has donated over $105 million to lupus research.

SLE, a chronic autoimmune disease, can affect almost every organ in the body, including the joints, the heart, kidneys, the skin, the lungs, and the brain. ALR estimates that 1.5 million people in the U.S. suffer from the disease — mostly women in their childbearing years.