Twelve senior citizens in the Coachella Valley will be honored Thursday for their inspiration on others as part of the 17th Annual Senior Inspiration Awards luncheon.
Cathedral City resident Cy Breen is one of this year’s recipients. The 97-year-old is being honored for his fundraising and charity work.
For the past three years on his birthday, Breen golfs the same number of holes as his new age. The money raised benefits for City of Hope in Duarte, Calif., which specializes in cancer treatment.
He says he began this unique fundraising event in memory of his stepdaughter Jody Klein, who died from breast cancer in 2005.
“When she passed away, I couldn’t attend her funeral,” says Breen. “I always felt bad about that.”
Just to the north in Desert Hot Springs, Maureen Williams is doing her part in raising money for cancer awareness.
Williams, 79, is the city’s team captain for the Relay for Life.
“Anything to make a buck for charity!” she quips. “I don’t have any money. So, I ask people for theirs.”
Williams says she is involved in at least a half-dozen organizations which keeps her quite busy.
“My kids say ‘we have to make an appointment to see our mother because she’s so busy,'” she says heartily from her home on Valencia Drive.
Her biggest accomplishment, however, is Dollars for Scholars, which gives out scholarships to Desert Hot Springs high school students who decide to attend college.
Williams believes college is the answer for a better life for students.
A senior citizen from each of the Desert Cities, plus two from the unincorporated areas of Riverside County, was chosen to receive an award.
Riverside County Supervisor Roy Wilson is scheduled to preside over the luncheon to be held at the Westin Mission Hills in Rancho Mirage at 11:30 a.m.