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Fundraiser to benefit Children’s Organ Transplant Association

January 31, 2018
By CHUCK BALLARO ( , North Fort Myers Neighbor

The Sons of the American Legion Chapter 336 spend the entire year raising funds for children who are in desperate need for organ transplants, and once again the time is drawing near for one of its big fundraisers.

The Sons of the American Legion is a program of the American Legion whose members exist to honor the service and sacrifice of Legionnaires. Chapter 336, which is located at the Ralph Sparks American Legion Post 336 at 5770 Bayshore Road, is looking to do a fundraiser in February for COTA (Children's Organ Transplant Association).

John Mammano, second vice commander of the SOL chapter, said the group plans on holding an all-day event on Saturday, Feb. 24, including a prime rib dinner, a Chinese auction and a 50/50 raffle.

"We got involved with them two years ago when we went to a convention in Orlando. We had other charities to choose from, but we picked that one and did as much as we can for it," Mammano said.

In its first year, the SOL raised $8,000 and last year it raised around $15,000. Mammano said he would like to raise at least as much this year and, since June, has raised $4,000 through smaller raffles and events.

S.A.L. members include males of all ages whose parents or grandparents served in the U.S. military and were eligible for American Legion membership. Many Legionnaires hold dual membership in SAL.

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Rod Parker, a director of marketing at COTA, will be there. In the past he has sent them calendars and other materials the SOL can sell and donate the proceeds back to COTA.

COTA helps children who are in need of a life-saving transplant by providing fundraising assistance and family support.

"Everything we raise stays in the state of Florida. The money pays for everything, the transplant, the parents to stay with them, it costs them nothing," Mammano said.

The organization is accepting donations to benefit the Children's Organ Transplant Association.

Those interested in making a monetary donation or providing an item or items for the raffle, can call the American Legion at 543-1919.



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