World Champion and 3 Time All-Star first baseman, Anthony Rizzo is not only a hero on the field but off of it as well. Over the last six years, Anthony has been a champion for pediatric cancer patients and their families. In 2008, at the age of 18, Anthony was diagnosed with Hodgkin’s lymphoma. Anthony quickly realized that an individual does not fight cancer alone, but rather the whole family tackles it together. As a result, the Anthony Rizzo Family Foundation (ARFF) was established in 2012 to provide financial support to families battling cancer and to advance pediatric cancer research.
In 2017, the Foundation made a $3.5 million endowment to Lurie’s to establish two funds: (1) Hope 44 Fund which will grant resources to families facing financial stress resulting from a child’s cancer treatments to support co-pays, meals, rent, utility bills or child care for siblings. Financial need is assessed by onsite social workers. (2) The Anthony Rizzo Family Foundation Child Life Fund to support two oncology child-life specialists. During the regular baseball season, Anthony makes monthly visits to Lurie’s to bring Cubs goodies, sign autographs, take photos and serve as a source of inspiration. Anthony also sends letters of encouragement to kids from all over and provides autographed items to non-profits that support cancer patients.