Tyler Gentile (right), of Lincroft, with his father, Ron Gentile, worked with PurpleStride to raise money for the Pancreatic Cancer Action Network.

(From The Monmouth Journal)

LINCROFT — Why get involved? That is a question Tyler Gentile, 16, a Lincroft resident who is a junior at Christian Brothers Academy in Lincroft, asked himself before getting involved with the Pancreatic Cancer Action Network. As he started thinking more and more about his future and what career path he wants to pursue, he kept coming back to wanting to help people.
This desire started in 2009 when, at the young age of 10, his grandmother, or as he liked to call her, ‘Uma,’ was diagnosed with pancreatic cancer. At the age of 67, she lost a short-lived battle with this deadly disease and he still thinks about her every day.

Through fundraising efforts and reaching out to corporate executives, Ty was able to raise more than $4,000. In addition to the funds raised, he was able to get a team of 11 family members to join him for the PurpleStride New Jersey event that was held last month.

“It was very gratifying to be able to remember my Uma and raise money and awareness for Pancreatic Cancer along with her daughter — my mother — and her two sons — my uncles,” Tyler said. “I think she is looking down from heaven smiling knowing that we honor her memory each and every day and in a special way each time we all get together.”

PurpleStride is the signature event of the Pancreatic Cancer Action Network. Each year, in communities across the country, tens of thousands of people participate in more than 56 PurpleStride events, including PurpleStride New Jersey. These events are critical in raising awareness and funds that advance research and support patients and loved ones with a promise of a better tomorrow

PurpleStride New Jersey 2015 was a huge success and there were nearly 2,600 registrants who together were able to raise $350,000 for the fight against pancreatic cancer.

The Pancreatic Cancer Action Network was formed in 1999. Today, the Pancreatic Cancer Action Network has a full staff and a growing community of volunteers from across the country, who are committed and empowered individuals, working hard each day to change the course of history for pancreatic cancer. Please visit the Pancreatic Cancer Action Network website at www.pancan.org for more information.
Tyler plans on becoming a community organizer for the Pancreatic Cancer Action Network and is already planning a local awareness event to further his commitment to helping those afflicted with Pancreatic Cancer have hope.