Memorial Golf Tournament Honors Megan Stendebach and Raises Funds for Thyroid Cancer Research

7th Annual Golf Tournament Celebrates the Life of Longtime ThyCa Volunteer and Sets Goal of Topping $100,000 Next Year

Olney, MD (July 14, 2008) — “Big” John Oaks, proprietor of the Hanging Tree Saloon in Bracken, Texas, announced that the 7th Annual Hanging Tree Saloon Golf Tournament for Thyroid Cancer Research, which has been renamed the 7th Annual Megan Stendebach Memorial Golf Tournament for Thyroid Cancer Research, raised more than $13,000 for ThyCa: Thyroid Cancer Survivors’ Association this past May 18th.

“It was a beautiful, sunny day for golf, as 109 golfers, and many more additional supporters got together to fondly remember Megan and share in great barbecue and refreshments, and raise much needed funds for Thyroid Cancer Research,” Oaks said. He donated the food and refreshments, ensuring that all net proceeds went for thyroid cancer research.

To date this fundraiser has raised more than $77,000 for thyroid cancer research. Oaks plans to continue this tribute event in honor of Megan Stendebach, who lived with her family in San Antonio and volunteered for ThyCa for 10 years until she passed away in March 2008. His immediate goal is to top $100,000 next year.

Thyroid cancer, one of the few cancers increasing in incidence, is expected to reach a new record of 37,340 people newly diagnosed in the United States in 2008. Research to find cures for all thyroid cancer is urgently needed, and ThyCa began funding research grants in 2003.

“Megan gave inspiration and hope to people worldwide,” said Gary Bloom, ThyCa Executive Director. “She was one of the first contributors to ThyCa’s web site, sharing her creative songs about coping with thyroid cancer. In addition, she co-coordinated several of our conferences and helped with outreach programs. She and Big John initiated the wonderful Hanging Tree Golf Tournaments for Thyroid Cancer Research. We all are grateful to Big John for continuing the golf tournament to celebrate Megan’s life and honor her memory as well as his devotion to the well-being of others with thyroid cancer.”

ThyCa: Thyroid Cancer Survivors’ Association, Inc. is a national non-profit 501(c)(3) organization (tax ID #52-2169434) of thyroid cancer survivors, family members, and healthcare professionals. The organization is dedicated to support, education and communication for thyroid cancer survivors, their families and friends. ThyCa also sponsors Thyroid Cancer Awareness Month, year-round awareness activities, and thyroid cancer research fundraising and research grants. For additional information, please visit, call 1-877-588-7904, or e-mail