This past Saturday I observed an entire community living in the moment when I attended a fundraiser at Willikers in Shrewsbury, MA for Kevin Phillips (KP), a friend of Matt's living with pancreatic cancer. KP was diagnosed with pancreatic cancer this past Spring...at the age of 27. Quickly after this news shocked and stunned friends, family and the Westborough community, Kevin's closest friends created a facebook page, Team KP, to be there for KP, his girlfriend Theresa, her son Jake, and well, each other. There is no shortage of support. Via facebook, friends comment and status updates are posted on the reg., purple Team KP wrist bands were created, t-shirts repping the KP logo designed, a Kevin J Phillips fund at Sovereign Bank was born and Saturday's fundraiser celebrated life.
The atmosphere at Willikers on Saturday was positive and heart warming. Local businesses and organizations donated gift certificates to be raffled, three local bands performed, and stellar prizes such as a getaway weekend, Red Sox tickets, and a bat signed by Red Sox captain Jason Veritek were silently auctioned. The owner of Willikers even donated the restaurant and the food for the evening. KP's close friends and organizers of the event really did an exceptional job (thank you!!) Looking around the room you saw friends and family connecting, overwhelming support and devotion, and everyone in attendance was living.in.the.moment!
Prior to the event, an article was written in the online version of The Daily Westborough informing the community of the fundraiser and quoting friends and KP about the past few months. A close friend of KP's, Sarah Arsenault said, "Because of this, a lot of people who have lost track of each other over the years have re-connected. He’s such a positive guy. I think it rubs off on all of us who know him.” On Saturday night, KP's love for life was palpable. The positive attitude Sarah referenced was obvious and contagious. The energy at the event was bright, generous and full of love. All were savoring the moment and it was beautiful!
KP, you are an unbelievable person. You are honest, hilarious, energetic and a breath of fresh air. A true embodiment of strength and courage and a real inspiration to us all. I have not known you long, but I would be blessed to get to know you better. Live life and know no boundaries. Team KP!
And in the end, it's not the years in your life that count. It's the life in your years. ~Abraham Lincoln
We cannot change the cards we are dealt, just how we play the hand. -Randy Pausch
Forever is composed of nows. -Emily Dickinson
Today is a gift. That's why we call it the present. -Babatunde Olatunji