Several Packers wives and staff were among 500-plus volunteers who worked to raise nearly $1 million at the Cerebral Palsy Telethon this weekend.
During the 48th annual telethon, Lisa Jagodzinski, Karen Washington, Tammy Bevell, Shari Donatell, Kris Rossley, Marian Beightol, Carol Slowik, Mary Pat Pelini, Yvette Sherman and Adriane Drayton took shifts answering phones, helping to collect $803,907, an event record. The telethon raised $760,000 in 2001.
Dee Geurts-Bengtson, the team's director of special events, also took calls at the event. She serves on the Cerebral Palsy board of directors, working to raise awareness of the disease. Packers kicker Ryan Longwell and his wife, Sarah, are the honorary chairpeople for the CP center, which services Northeastern Wisconsin.
Assistant coach Jeff Jagodzinski and his wife Lisa, whose daughter Jaci is inflicted with a rare disorder, use the facility four times a week. As a result of the disorder, called West Syndrome, Jaci is globally and developmentally delayed. Doctors originally told the family she would never walk, speak, or even complete the simplest of tasks. But through the center's speech, physical therapy and occupational therapy programs, she has made amazing progress. Jaci also attends the cetner's Common Paths Preschool. She's just one of the many miracles the center is producing on a daily basis.
Kate Hogan, who oversees the Packers Pro Shop, has seen the CP Center at work for the last seven years. Her two children, Bailey and Mitchell, neither of whom have CP, work alongside special-needs kids in an integrated environment. In addition to CP patients, the center also assists accident victims, stroke and brain-injury patients, people with multiple sclerosis, and those with other disabilities, from newborns to elderly.
The telethon, which aired on WBAY-TV (Ch. 2 in Green Bay), directs all of its proceeds to Northeastern Wisconsin.