It was five years ago that I really understood what cystic fibrosis was. I was having a nice Sunday lunch with my wife, Cornelia, (who was 8 months pregnant with our daughter Nealie Finn), at the Hanover Seaside Club in Wrightsville Beach, NC. Our beach friends Bryan and Victoria Wessell walked in the dining room with their fresh new born baby, Jozie and they were overflowing with joy and pride. However, I found out later that they were deeply concerned and with good reason. This was because Jozie had been born with Cystic Fibrosis or (CF), the genetic disease that affects the lungs and breathing. Since that lunch, I have watched Jozie become a true lover of the beach and one of my daughter’s best friends. Watching the two of them play in the surf, you would never think about CF and Jozie’s struggles. But, as my daughter Nealie tells me, Jozie starts each of her days with a vibrating chest therapy session, she has to take medication before each meal and is always on the lookout for germs (because people with CF are more susceptible to bacterial infections than the general population). These behind the scene routines are never a cause of complaint by Jozie or her parents. In fact, they are beacons of positivity, more stoked and joyous every day. Since her diagnosis, her parents have been extremely involved in the Annual Pipeline to a Cure Benefit and Gala which raises money for research in hopes of one day curing this horrible disease. EDA Surf has been donating art each year to the auction. This year was the first year EDA Surf art was presented during the live auction. The piece chosen was an extra large (74″x 48″ Weatherproof Aluminum) work titled “Hold Down”.
This piece was chosen because it represents the feeling of being held down and not being able to breathe, the very horrific sensation these children and adults feel daily. After an intense bidding war, it was an honor to see the art donated raise more than $5000 for the charity. As the night concluded, one of the top doctors who does research for this disease, Dr. Scott Donaldson of UNC Chapel Hill, said we are on the cusp of a monumental discovery. He said, “Maybe someday soon we will have our final gala where we don’t ask for any money and will just party in celebration of the cure.” Until that day comes, researchers will need more money to help these very deserving children. If you would like to donate money to help children like Jozie fight cystic fibrosis please click this link here.