CONWAY (WBTW) – Ever since St. James High School football coach Mark Fischer told his players after a game last fall that he was battling multiple myeloma-a type of blood cancer-the team, the school, and the community have poured out support for him and his family.
That continues Friday with a push to kick off National Multiple Myeloma month, and to show support for Fischer as he continues grueling and intensive treatments at Duke University in Durham.
Since the fall, hundreds of t-shirts-shirts and stickers with the slogan “Run Through It” have sold to benefit the Fischer family, and the school and community members hosted fundraisers to benefit him as well.
“It's really overwhelming,” said Mackenzie Fischer, the coach's daughter and a senior at St. James. “But without the support we have–we couldn't do it without the community. It's definitely a team effort, just like football.”
On Friday, school leaders invite anyone who wants to pray for the Fischer family to meet at the flag pole outside at 7:45 a.m. Also, during lunch on Thursday and Friday, students have the opportunity to record video greetings for Fischer and his wife, who have been staying at Duke while his treatments continue. The school also asks anyone who purchased one of the burgundy t-shirts-shirts to wear it–or any burgundy-colored clothing–on Friday to show support for Fischer.
“It's been just an amazing thing to watch,” said Principal Vann Pennell. “People rally around someone in need. This community is super about showing (its) feelings and concerns for someone that's in need.”