Ohio sunflower fields raise money for cancer research

SANDUSKY, Ohio—An organization in northeastern Ohio honors the lives of children who battled cancer by growing sunflowers.

What you need to know

The Prayers from Maria Foundation honors the life of Maria McNamara, who died of a glioma tumor at age 7

Prayers of Mary have raised nearly $8 million in the fight against childhood cancer

The organization runs two sunflower fields in the hopes of drawing attention to childhood cancer research

Spectrum News 1 anchor Chuck Ringwalt spoke to Megan McNamara, Maria’s mother and the founder of Prayers from Maria, about their battle with childhood cancer.

McNamara talked about the impact her daughter made when she was 7 years old.

“Our daughter, Maria, who was diagnosed with a deadly brain tumor, really inspired the foundation. She inspired our thoughts and our ideas and what we wanted to achieve, but one of the things she did was she always prayed for other children who were suffering. , other kids she met at St. Jude’s fighting in battle,” she said. “And one of the things that is conveyed to the field in that memory is people who come to the field or are able to fill out prayer cards and put their prayers or their thoughts or their hopes on prayer cards on the field. And then they go and take those prayer cards and hang them on a sunflower.Every day many families get the heartbreaking news that their child has been diagnosed with cancer.”

The sunflowers in Cedar Point usually bloom in August. The sunflowers in Avon usually bloom in September during Childhood Cancer Awareness Month.

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