The V Foundation and WWE have joined forces to raise money to support pediatric cancer research through Connor’s Cure. Connor’s Cure was created in honor of 8-year-old WWE fan Connor Michalek, who battled medulloblastoma, a rare tumor that affects the brain and spinal cord. WWE Chief Brand Officer Stephanie McMahon and WWE Executive Vice President Global Talent Strategy & Development Paul “Triple H” Levesque established Connor’s Cure as a fund within Children’s Hospital of Pittsburgh Foundation to support pediatric brain and spinal cord cancer research.
Fantasy Football Supports Connor’s Cure
Five super heroes have stepped up to the plate this year to raise money for the V Foundation in a unique way. The Fantastic Five — actor James Roday, WWE superstar Mike “The Miz”, WWE superstar Kofi Kingston, NFL analyst Michael Fabiano and an unmasked celebrity — will all donate their winnings in the NFFC Primetime this year to Connor’s Cure in support of pediatric cancer research. All participants in all five leagues are also asked to donate to Connor’s Cure in hopes of finding better treatments for kids battling cancer. The NFFC Primetime is the industry’s premiere fantasy football high-stakes championship with a $200,000 grand prize and league prizes of $7,000. The Fantastic Five will be in five separate leagues and all prize money — including the $200,000 grand prize should one of these owners win it — will be donated to the V Foundation. In addition, The Miz and Roday will donate their team winnings and $1,000 per team, for any team that finishes ahead of each of them in their final league standings.
WWE Superstars Visit Hospitals
WWE visits children’s hospitals around the world and have been inspired by the strength and courage shown by children facing even the most unimaginable circumstances. Often, pediatric patients create alter-egos or personas to help them in their fight against cancer.
Watch the Superstars of Tomorrow.
Connor’s Cure Funds Pediatric Cancer Research at the V Foundation
Funds raised by WWE support Connor’s Cure through the V Foundation’s grant-making process. The V Foundation’s Scientific Advisory Committee vets and awards top-rated grant proposals from the nation’s leading medical facilities. In addition, funding will continue to support the research being done at Children’s Hospital of Pittsburgh of UPMC.
In September 2020, Dick Vitale and WWE combined their efforts this year to fund three pediatric grants totaling $1.8 million, with $900,000 being contributed by Vitale and WWE. Translational grants are three-year awards of $600,000 total and support bench-to-bedside research. Two of the grants will fund studies related to DIPG, a universally fatal brain cancer, and the third grant will fund research for solid tumors in children.
Connor’s Cure has helped raise nearly $3.5 million and assisted more than 500 families around the world.
Watch the video below to learn more about Connor “The Crusher” Michalek.
*Per UPMC Children’s Hospital of Pittsburgh, the children featured in the banner image were photographed individually following Covid health and safety protocols.