WINONA, Minn. — More than 575 people attended Saint Mary’s University’s 14th annual Taylor Richmond Benefit Dance on March 15.
Proceeds from the dance — and a silent auction held on campus — raised more than $14,000 for this year’s beneficiary Jason Richter, who worked at Saint Mary’s from 1998 to 2010 in Student Activities and was once responsible for overseeing this same benefit event. Richter, who currently lives in Davenport, Iowa, is formerly of Rollingstone, where he served with the volunteer fire department and was an active community member.
Prior to being diagnosed with multiple myeloma last summer, Richter had pain in his lower back that turned out to be a mass. This is a disease that is more commonly found in people around the age of 60; because of his young age, he has responded well to treatments. He has undergone 10 radiation sessions, as well as recent bone and stem cell transplants. On top of that, the Richter family lives an hour away from the hospital Jason is receiving treatment at in Iowa City.
Although now in remission, Richter is still undergoing chemotherapy treatments. This year’s proceeds will assist his family, which includes three young sons, with their medical expenses and travel costs.
The benefit has become an annual student tradition since its start in 2001 in honor of Taylor Richmond, son of SMU staff member Nikki Richmond and Nick Richmond. Each year this event benefits someone in need who has ties to the SMU community. Although Taylor passed away this past October, his memory lives on at Saint Mary’s.
Donations are still being accepted; send checks — payable to the Taylor Richmond Benefit Dance — to Lance Thompson, Saint Mary’s University, 700 Terrace Heights #1528, Winona, MN 55987.