Donations to Benefit Pediatric Cancer Research in Honor of Song’s Namesake
The V Foundation for Cancer Research, one of the nation’s leading cancer research funding organizations, is excited to announce that it will receive $100,000 from the sales of international superstar Taylor Swift’s single “Ronan,” whose proceeds benefit pediatric cancer research. Swift’s donation will add to the more than $14 million The V Foundation has already awarded to fund pediatric cancer research through signature events like the Dick Vitale Gala. Cancer is the leading disease-related cause of children’s death in the US. The V Foundation is intent on changing this and saving children.
“I have great respect for Taylor as an artist, but I have even more respect for her as a person. She is willing to extend a hand to help those in need and that is a very special trait,” said Dick Vitale, ESPN Hall of Fame Sportscaster and a member of The V Foundation’s Board of Directors. “All I can say is …’Thank you, Taylor, from the bottom of my heart.’”
Swift wrote “Ronan,” released in September 2012, after reading Maya Thompson’s blog Rockstar Ronan about her 3-year-old son’s battle with neuroblastoma. A rare type of cancer that occurs almost exclusively in infants and young children, neuroblastoma is formed when special, immature nerve cells become cancer cells, rather than growing into functioning nerve cells. Swift credited Thompson as co-writer of “Ronan” after she was inspired by Thompson’s blog, which was created in August 2010 when Ronan was first diagnosed. Thompson used her blog to work through her grief when Ronan passed away in May 2011, writing heartbreaking letters to her late son while also raising money and awareness for childhood cancer causes. Ronan passed away just three days before he would have turned four years old. Swift donates all of her proceeds from the song to combat childhood cancer.
“Taylor Swift, through her song “Ronan,” has captured the heartbreak of childhood cancers,” said Susan Braun, CEO of The V Foundation. “Ronan’s short life touched Taylor, and through Taylor’s artistry Ronan’s life touches each of ours. What a gift she gives us with the song, and with her generous donation to help us fund pediatric cancer research.”
Twenty-four-year-old Taylor Swift is a seven-time Grammy winner, and is the youngest winner in history of the music industry’s highest honor, the Grammy Award for Album of the Year. She is the only female artist in music history, and just the fourth artist ever, to twice have an album hit the 1 million first-week sales figure. “Ronan” is currently available in the iTunes Store and received more than 220,000 downloads in its first week.