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Supporting DIPG Research

The Kensington Hotel would like to take this opportunity to utilize this platform to highlight a cause that is close to our hearts. 


In 2014, a four-letter acronym changed the course of Tammi Carr’s life forever. Her son, Chad, was diagnosed with an inoperable brain tumor known as diffuse intrinsic pontine glioma (DIPG). Three days later, he spent his 4th birthday at Mott Children’s Hospital in Ann Arbor, Michigan. Chad underwent thirty rounds of radiation at Mott and then participated in a clinical trial at Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center in New York, but lost the battle fourteen months later.


During Chad’s illness, Tammi took to social media to share her family’s journey. She spoke of her grief and loss with an honesty and raw vulnerability that captured the hearts of people from all over the world. The word “ChadTough” quickly emerged as a slogan of hope. The outpouring of support, prayers, and awareness generated by the #ChadTough movement transcended college rivalries and united communities. Even with the notoriety brought by her father-in-law, former University of Michigan football coach Lloyd Carr, Tammi was amazed at the way the people rallied behind her family.


“Sharing Chad’s story brought attention to the devastation of childhood brain cancer,” said Tammi. “I knew we had to keep going and build on the momentum so that one day families facing the leading cancer killer among kids will have the hope that we weren’t given. If there had been more research done sooner, maybe Chad would be here with us today.”

Chad’s Legacy

The ChadTough Defeat DIPG Foundation was formed in 2015 with a mission to fund game-changing brain cancer research. Now, the foundation has committed nearly $30 million to research and recently launched a program called My DIPG Navigator to give free, personalized support to families facing a DIPG diagnosis. 


This May, the foundation will host its annual ChadTough Defeat DIPG Gala, honoring the lives of children who have battled brain cancer. The event includes an impressive online auction that will open to the public on May 4th. 


“The auction includes unique, one of a kind items, from vacation packages to sports memorabilia,” said Tammi. “It’s a great way for anyone to get involved and help support our mission.”

Hope on the Horizon

Tammi’s grief is always there. It never dulls and is sometimes overwhelming. But she tries hard every day to focus on the bigger picture and work towards a world where no family has to endure the pain of losing a child to DIPG.


“Life is like the back of a tapestry with all these knots. It makes no sense when you look at them, and it’s ugly sometimes. You don’t know how these knots intersect and why until you can turn it over and see this beautiful picture,” she says. “I believe that picture will be Chad’s impact on this terrible disease.”


With each donation, each auction bid, and each moment of support, the tapestry of hope continues to grow, weaving a future where Chad’s legacy shines brightly, and kids with DIPG have a brighter tomorrow.


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