Breast cancer has touched everyone, and the team at Don Schumacher Racing can be counted on that list.
Linda Matranga, mother-in-law of DSR’s NHRA Top Fuel points-leading driver Antron Brown of the Matco Tools team, is a breast cancer survivor.
So is Ellen Tobler, wife of DSR’s NHRA Funny Car points-leading crew chief Rahn Tobler.
Those close connections to the disease will put added luster on DSR’s special-edition pink Matco Tools dragster, which Brown will drive wearing a pink firesuit and helmet at three NHRA Full Throttle Drag Racing Series events to help promote Matco’s Tools for the Cause campaign to benefit the Susan G. Komen for the Cure organization.
“Wearing my pink suit and driving that pink dragster will be just like flying Matco’s red, white, and blue colors. It’s great to be part of Matco and be able to help others,” Brown said. “That’s God’s way and the American way.”
From Oct. 1, 2012, through Sept. 30, 2013, Matco Tools will donate 15 percent of the sale of specially marked products to Susan G. Komen for the Cure, with a guaranteed minimum donation of $100,000.
Brown’s unique firesuit, helmet, and the race team’s pink crew shirts will be on eBay.com in November, all proceeds of which will go to Susan G. Komen for the Cure.
Matranga, whose daughter Billie Jo has been married to Brown 12 years, had a routine mammogram in December 2007. A biopsy revealed a cancerous tumor that led to major surgery five months later followed by seven months of chemotherapy.
“The road to recovery is long, but I made it through. I’m a survivor,” said Matranga, who lives in Gheens, La.
“It was tough for her,” Brown said, “and we weren’t able to be down there in Louisiana to help her. You just have to pray and leave it in God’s hands. I can’t even fathom what it’s like for any woman to go through that kind of ordeal.”
The popular racer and fan favorite is proud to help Matco’s Tools for the Cause.
“We always want to be there anytime you can help with research to help doctors get smarter to help women like my mother-in-law and others in my family who have gone through the same thing.
“It’s a true blessing and honor to be part of this and very special for me to see a corporation like Matco get behind it and to give back to such a great cause that could affect millions of people’s lives.”
The Matco Tools family is full of strong women – distributors, technicians, employees, and wives – and many are battling or have survived breast cancer. In honor of these women, Matco Tools has launched its Tools for the Cause campaign to raise money and support for Susan G. Komen for the Cure.
According to Susan G. Komen for the Cure, in 2012, it is estimated that among U.S. women, there will be 226,870 new cases of invasive breast cancer, and 39,510 women will lose the fight. Susan G. Komen for the Cure is the largest source of nonprofit funds dedicated to the fight against breast cancer in the world and has invested more than $2 billion in fulfilling its promise to end breast cancer forever. Matco’s Tools for the Cause campaign will provide additional funds toward the search for finding the cures.
The pink Matco Tools for the Cause dragster will be unveiled Oct. 5 at the NHRA Full Throttle event near Philadelphia at Maple Grove Raceway in Reading and race at the last three events of the season.
“Matco Tools has many personal ties to breast cancer at every level of the organization,” said Tim Gilmore, president of Matco Tools. “We are proud that our company can give back and donate profits to such an important organization. Komen is a great partner that’s doing remarkable things in the community to raise awareness, provide treatment, and support survivors.”
Dorothy Jones, vice president of marketing for Susan G. Komen for the Cure, added, “We are delighted to partner with Matco for this campaign. Employees at Matco know firsthand the effect breast cancer can have on an individual or a family. The Tools for the Cause campaign takes the passion of Matco and its employees and turns it into a way for people across the country to make an impact in the fight against breast cancer.”
More information on the Tools for the Cause campaign, including a full list of available products, will be on display beginning Friday at ToolsForTheCause.MatcoTools.com.
Brown, who has won five NHRA event titles this season, will continue to chase his first NHRA series championship in the Matco Tools for the Cause Top Fueler during the Oct. 25-28 Big O Tires NHRA Nationals at The Strip at Las Vegas Motor Speedway and the season finale two weeks later in Pomona.