Shannon Perez is a student at Neil Hafley Elementary School.
On Aug. 10, the local 12-year-old girl experienced stomach pains and ended missing school that day. “She missed so many days the previous school year and so she went back the next day and toughed it out,” said Manteca High girls varsity soccer coach Justin Coenenberg.
Perez’s parents took her to emergency, thinking it was an appendix. They were devastated to discover that their daughter had a large tumor in her ovary.
Shannon Perez was transported Kaiser Permanente Roseville, where the pediatric specialty surgery center is located.
The family was informed that Shannon had a malignant germ cell tumor in her right ovary – removed after a second surgery.
Since then, Perez has undergone three cycles of chemotherapy, with her latest bloodwork showing no traces of cancer. She’ll continue to go in for regular doctor visits for the next few years to monitor her condition.
Coenenberg and his Lady Buffaloes are looking to help.
On Friday, they’ll host their annual Kicking for A Cure game against Lathrop High – 100 percent of the proceeds will raise money for Perez and her family during these challenging times – in a non-league game at Guss Schmiedt Field, beginning at 6:45 p.m.
“Though Shannon is cancer-free right now, there will continue to be tests, doctor visits, and lots of worries,” said Coenenberg on behalf of the MHS Athletic Boosters.
He added: “Her parents have missed many days of work to stay by her side, which caused a financial strain on the family.”
The Kicking for A Cure game will feature a raffle and silent auction of gift cards, items, experiences, and food / beverages, to name a few.
Sponsorships as well as the Athletic Booster annual Rib Dinner also contributes to the cause.
The annual Kicking for A Cure game is a chance to bring local awareness and hope to the fight against cancer while also supporting a student in the community.
For more information including donations, call 209.608.0652.