Kaneohe Bay, HI, July 22, 2014 – Winning an ocean race feels great, but three boats – Mirage, Thirsty, and Free Bowl of Soup – are competing in the 2014 Pacific Cup race from San Francisco Bay to Hawaii with a goal more rewarding than just coming in ahead of the other competitors.
The father-daughter team Stan Perkins and Kerry Hallyburton have been competing in multiple sailing events since 2013 to publicize and raise funds for Remember Nhu, an international nonprofit dedicated to preventing the exploitation of children in the sex trade industry. More specifically, through their “Sail for Remember Nhu” campaign, Perkins and Hallyburton hope to raise $160,000 to build a new safe house for 60 children rescued from sex slavery. “When my husband, Rick, and I first heard about Remember Nhu, we heard how children as young as three years old were being sold into the sex trade,” Kerry told the Hood River News in an interview earlier this year. “We had a baby at the time and couldn’t imagine the thought of children just like ours being sold and the horrific things that would be done to them. We knew at that moment that we needed to partner with Remember Nhu.”
Racing in the Pacific Cup was the ultimate goal of the team’s two-year fundraising mission but is also a dream-come-true for father and daughter alike. Stan was introduced to sailing more than 30 years ago. Kerry learned to sail with her father on the windy Columbia River Gorge and has dreamed of doing an ocean race with him for many years.
Aboard Thirsty, a Beneteau First 30, the double-handed team of Charles Devanneaux and Fred Courouble are raising awareness for amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS, also known as Lou Gehrig’s Disease) while paying tribute to sailing partner and friend Gilles Galeme, who lost an eight-month battle with the disease in 2012. Charly and Fred, two Frenchmen who now call Marina del Rey home, won first place in their division in the 2012 Pacific Cup. However, “our boat partner Gilles was supposed to be waiting for our arrival in Hawaii with mai-tais, but he never made it because he had been diagnosed with ALS,”
Charly said. “We decided to return to the Pacific Cup race this year, with the ALS Association’s logo on the hull and sail, and name our voyage ‘Sailing for ALS’” to honor Gilles’ memory and all the good times we have had together.” Those good times included enjoying good wine together, so Charly and Fred made sure they had plenty of excellent wine aboard when they departed San Francisco for Kaneohe Bay. The ALS awareness and fundraising effort of the Thirsty team will support research, public policy initiatives and families touched by the disease.
As their boat name might suggest, the team racing on Free Bowl of Soup, a J105 hailing from Portland, Oregon, and skippered by Eric Hopper, is on a sailing quest to raise funds for Oregon Food Bank. It’s a quest the team began over a decade ago to redeem a bit of bad karma after joking that their boat name (a line from the classic 1980 film Caddyshack) was serious (it isn’t). They turned the joke into a fun way for friends and supporters to help raise funds for a good cause, setting a lofty goal to raise the equivalent of 50,000 free bowls of soup.
Thirsty and Free Bowl of Soup crossed the finish line on Kaneohe Bay, Oahu on Monday, July 21. Mirage should follow them within a day. A “Sailing for ALS Aloha Reception” is being held on Tuesday, July 22 at noon at the Kaneohe Yacht Club.
This article was syndicated from BLUE PLANET TIMES