The Aubrey Lady Chaps basketball team is looking to pack the gymnasium at Aubrey High School on Tuesday night for a game against the Australian national girls team, benefiting a teammate’s family.
Proceeds will go to the family of Lady Chaps senior guard Mahaley Millican, whose mother, Jinny, is battling stage 4 metastatic melanoma. Tickets cost $4 for adults and $3 for students, and the game begins at 6:15 p.m.
Lady Chaps players, who came up with the idea to donate the proceeds, said it’s helping one of their own.
“Our team is like family, so when one of us hurts or struggles, we’re there to help each other,” sophomore Kendyl Wright said.
Teammates began planning the benefit more than a week ago and received approval from the school district to proceed with donating ticket sales to the Millican family last week. Word about the game has spread throughout the community via the high school, social media sites and the school district and high school websites.
Jinny Millican and her husband, Chris, who works in the district’s technology department, said they both learned of the benefit through Facebook.
The support from the team and the community as a whole is overwhelming, Jinny Millican said. She’s thankful they care.
“I really just don’t know what to say,” she said. “The support is wonderful. It’s awesome.”
Chris Millican said it surprised him to learn what the team was trying to do for his family.
“It’s just been a great blessing and great to see the support of the team,” he said. “It’s just really amazing what kind of team they have and the support they have for one another to do something like this.
“It shows what a team is all about.”
Karen Wright, a vice principal at Aubrey High, said the team has tried to do anything it can to help its teammate. Last month, the girls got together to prepare food that they surprised the Millican family with during the Thanksgiving break, she said.
“They just want to make her [Mahaley] feel safe, loved and cared for … and that she’s not alone,” Karen Wright said.
The Lady Chaps shared their idea to donate ticket proceeds with Superintendent James Monaco last Monday and with the school board a couple days later.
Monaco said he found the team’s efforts for a teammate’s family wonderful.
“The game itself is inconsequential,” Monaco said. “The thought and the spirit, what they’re doing it for, that’s what makes it so great. It just makes you proud to live in Aubrey, America.”
BRITNEY TABOR can be reached at 940-566-6876. Her e-mail address is firstname.lastname@example.org .