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Teachers Throw Benefit in Memory of Beloved Oak Forest HS Grad

Julia Janes touched many lives in her 20 years—and now they want to do something in her honor.

Teachers Throw Benefit in Memory of Beloved Oak Forest HS Grad

A group of teachers from Oak Forest High School are holding a benefit “Julia’s Legacy of Hope” for the family of graduate Julia Janes, who lost her battle with cancer in November.

Julia's former teachers will honor her memory and fund a future scholarship in her name with a benefit at 115 Bourbon Street, 3359 W. 115th St., Feb. 23 from 1 to 6 p.m. 

Since her first diagnosis two days after her 16th birthday, up until her untimely passing at 20 years old on Nov. 14, Julia gave cancer one heck of a fight. A 2011 Oak Forest High School graduate, Janes radiated love, positivity, selflessness and passion. Daughter to teachers Jeff and Leslie, Janes went on to pursue a career in elementary education at Bradley University. 

Julia was known for her dedication to lifting the spirits of little ones battling cancer, as a volunteer at both St. Jude's and Advocate Children's Hospital. A "very quiet, unassuming private person ... she was "always thinking of other people," said her father Jeff. 

She excelled as a soccer player at OFHS, where she was bestowed the Imagine Award—named for the song by John Lennon, for her vision to imagine there are no obstacles to hold her back. She was named Saint Xavier University's 2009 Women's Soccer "Cougar of the Year." As a sophomore she played on varsity, where coaches recognized her indomitable spirit with the Bengal Inspirational Award, for her courage in battling cancer. Her selflessness earned her the Bengal "We" award, because she never put herself first. 

"Julia touched so many hearts with her warmth, her selfless personality, and her positive attitude," said teacher Kate Vana. "Through this benefit, we honor Julia's memory and continue her commitment to helping other children who are dealing with the challenges of cancer."

The benefit will include a $1,000 raffle and silent auction with more than 60 auction items including: 
  • a trip to Vegas airfare for 2 and 2 nights at the Mirage 
  • a week at a beach house in Garden City, South Carolina, 
  • 60-inch flat screen TV 
  • Nikon digital camera
  • Signed sports memorabilia
  • Tickets to Chicago sporting events
  • Artwork.
Tickets are $30 for guests age 21 and over (includes food, beer, wine, soda, dessert and entertainment). Guests under 21 are $15 a piece. Oak Forest student band, “Blond Moment” will be performing as well as the band “ Sh’Bang”.            

Any tickets purchased online by Friday will be entered for a chance to win an iPad Air.

All proceeds will go to a scholarship fund and to the Cure It Foundation, an organization founded by one of Julia’s oncologists, Dr. Jason Canner. 

Click here to b uy tickets and get more info on the benefit website.

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