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Rita’s Fundraiser for Second-Grader

Contributions also accepted online.

Tara Sankner, an 8-year-old second-grader at Lees Corner Elementary was recently diagnosed with brain cancer, and the community is rallying ’round to show its support.

She and a fundraising and support team called “Pray for Tara” wore special, pink T-shirts and participated in last Saturday’s, March 23, Rev3 Run Rogue 5K and 1K at the Fairfax Corner Shopping Center. Tara ran and walked in both events and also had a donation table there.

And on Monday, April 8, from 6-8 p.m., area residents can enjoy sweet treats while helping raise money to help with Tara’s medical bills. During those hours, Rita’s Italian Ice, at 10726 Fairfax Blvd., in Fairfax, will donate 20 percent off all sales to support Tara and her family.

Tara is being treated at Children’s National Medical Center in Washington, D.C., for an astrocytoma. She had her first chemotherapy treatment on March 13 and her second, March 20.

“Day one of chemo is good, but day two is always bad,” said her mother, Tammy Sankner. “And Tara’s tired and sick, two days after treatment.”

So Sankner was both pleased and surprised that her daughter was able to complete the 5K event Saturday morning. “Yesterday [Friday], she was so worn out from the chemo, she could hardly walk,” said Sankner.

When she’s feeling good, Tara enjoys doing arts and crafts and reading. Her mother says Tara’s normally a bubbly person who loves helping people do anything they need.

As for the upcoming event at Rita’s, Sankner said, “I think it’s great. I’m just beyond words about all the people who are helping us out. And I’m just so thrilled that Rita’s has given us the opportunity to do a fundraiser there.”

Those unable to attend the April 8 event may also contribute to Tara online. Go to www.airbanking.com/tools/; where it says to pick a charity, click and scroll down to Pray for Tara.