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Local Figures and Boxers Unite for Red Stick Rivalry Charity Bout

BATON ROUGE — A convergence of local luminaries and pugilists graced the ring at Baton Rouge Community College on Saturday for the Red Stick Rivalry boxing spectacle.

Democratic Chair Katie Bernhardt initiated the event by squaring off against Councilwoman Jennifer Racca in a spirited bout. The fisticuffs continued as Southern University Athletic Director Roman Banks sparred with LSU's Executive Athletic Director Verge Ausberry. Adding to the excitement, professional boxers from various corners of Louisiana showcased their skills.

Amidst the flurry of punches, the event championed a noble cause, with a portion of the proceeds earmarked for St. Jude's Children's Hospital and a local family in need. Ja'leah and Wajeedah Jones, the recipients of this charitable gesture, were at the forefront of the evening's proceedings.

Ja'leah's battle with a brain tumor, diagnosed in January, has seen her undergoing treatment at St. Jude's, making her journey a focal point of the event's philanthropic endeavors.

Reflecting on her arduous journey, Ja'leah expressed gratitude amidst her trials. "It has been a long, but great experience, I'll say. I just miss a lot of stuff and want to go home," she shared.

The Jones family's resilience and the community's unwavering support were evident throughout the event. Mayor-President Sharon Weston Broome, Councilwoman Carolyn Coleman, and Cleve Dunn were among the dignitaries to rally behind the cause and offer solace to Ja'leah.

Expressing their appreciation for the outpouring of support, Wajeedah conveyed heartfelt gratitude. "The support of the family, community, and everyone has been awesome. We just appreciate all of the support. We're so grateful and want to thank everyone for coming out. We are truly humbled and grateful," she remarked.

The Red Stick Rivalry not only showcased athleticism but also underscored the power of community solidarity in confronting life's adversities.

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