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Prize fighters in Philly

March 23, 2010

We made it! Up all 70 steps just like Rocky did!!! Look, there's Philadelphia behind us.

It's Rocky the statue! I'm with Brad Smith, Alison, and Michele Frennier from Philly March of Dimes.

I now know what a fighter who’s not in the NICU feels like. I ran up 70 steps to the top of the Philadelphia Museum of Art and I made it, just like Rocky did!

And then I got a medal and a Superman magnet from CIGNA’s Mark Marsters, so I really feel like a prize fighter!!! CIGNA is a national sponsor and local sponsor for Philly’s March for Babies. They have a goal this year to get 250 walkers which will bring in even more money than last year. Last year, all CIGNA’s in the U.S. raised $1.57 million and they were the top 6th team!

With Mark Marsters, Chair of CIGNA's 2010 March for Babies, and David Cordani, President and CEO of Cigna. They gave me a medal and said I'm like Superman!

A live CIGNA guitar player and a group song about walking in March for Babies - Mark, David, and James Dennis, State Director for Pennsylvania - March of Dimes

Here's a CIGNA employee with the same name as my little brother - Alex Hoffman!

CIGNA in Bloomfield last Tuesday … CIGNA in Philadelphia this Tuesday. Both offices are very cool. We even met their President and CEO David Cordani who is the absolute nicest man. David said that CIGNA and the March of Dimes are a perfect fit and he is so devoted to the mission.

So is Dr. Ackerman, Superintendent of the Philadelphia School District. Wow! She’s a neat lady. She said she’s in charge of all of the principals in all of the schools and 167,000 students. That’s a lot of people who helped beat their goal last year of $60,000 and raised $82,000. This year their goal is $100,000 and Dr. Ackerman is determined to get it. I’m sure she’ll do it because teachers, and principals, and superintendents are all always right!!!

Dr. Arlene Ackerman, Superintendent of the Philadelphia School District and I are figuring out how many dimes equal $100,000!!!

Dr. Ackerman is such a strong and sweet woman.

I was on the NBC 10! Show today and they had a live audience in the studio! It was so neat. They clapped when we finished and they yelled my name and waved good bye to me when we left. Here, here’s the link so you can check it out, too.

On the set of the NBC 10! morning show. It was so much fun! Especially with the studio audience. They were all so wonderful!!!

Then I met another person from NBC 10 at the TB&C (that’s Transportation, Building, & Construction – all things I really love!) Luncheon. Her name was Tracy Davidson and she was the emcee for the awards fundraiser.

Here's Tracy Davidson of NBC 10 and Brad McIlvain, TB&C Chairperson

There were over 800 people there, they reached their fundraising goal – over $225,000, and I got a very special note from someone my own age! Ryan’s grandfather won an award so Ryan missed school today like I did and was there with his dad. So when the program was over, Ryan came over to meet me and give me the note he wrote for me.

Here’s what it said:

Hi Joshua. I have saved 87 dimes for the March of Dimes. I saw the video and your speech. I am the same age as you. By, Ryan

Isn’t that the greatest? Let’s see, 87 dimes is $8.70. He has just a few more dimes to collect until he gets to the weight I was born in dimes – 6 rolls of dimes equals 1 pound 11 ounces. If all 7-year-olds saved their dimes like Ryan is doing for the March of Dimes it would add up to a lot of money. Before we gave high-fives goodbye, we wrote our addresses and phone numbers for each other so we can be Pen Pals.

Me and my new friend Ryan at the TB&C Awards Luncheon

Before we finished our day, we stopped by the Comcast Center to go to a planning meeting for the Comcast Sports Awards.  This would be an event in 2011 and they would pick four players from the four Philly teams to win a sports award.  Chicago has been doing this Sports Awards fundraising event for the March of Dimes for years and Philly is going to do the same thing and raise just as much money.

I just love Philadelphia.  Everyone here sure are fighters for preemies – we’re all joining in the fight together so we can beat our March for Babies goal – $100 Million throughout the country – so one day soon all babies will be born healthy.

3 Comments leave one →
  1. March 24, 2010 5:47 am

    Joshua – you did such a great job on your TV News interview. I just watched it with my mommy on the computer. You and I were both so little and I’m so glad you are helping to tell everyone about the March of Dimes and how they saved your life and helped your little brother Alex be born healthy! I can’t wait to see you again and play with you and Alex like we did the day we got to meet the President. Good luck and I hope you continue to have fun on your journey as the National Ambassador. Tell your brother Alex I said hi!

    Katelyn Marie Hall

  2. Ryan Buckton permalink
    March 24, 2010 6:05 am

    Hi Josh!

    I saw your blog message. It was fun to meet you and I hope you have a good trip. I can’t wait to tell my teacher and friends at school about the awards lunch. I sent you a note in the mail, I hope you get it and we can be pen pals for life!

    Ryan Buckton

  3. Mark Mills permalink
    March 24, 2010 11:01 am

    Great meeting you in Philly Josh!! Thanks for doing all that you do to inspire so many of us. Have a great March!

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