Some 54 people spent Friday through Sunday, Jan. 12-14 playing in the Triangle Scrabble Club's PBMT Tournament at Duke University Hospital for a good cause.
This was the eighth year for the charity Scrabble tournament to benefit the Duke Pediatric Bone Marrow Transplant Family Support Program. The program supports patients and their families through treatment at Duke by visiting patients, running errands, delivering meals and more. This year’s tournament raised $6,719.
The tournament has raised more than $35,000 for the program over the past eight years through registration fees and donations.
The tournament was started by a Chapel Hill teacher and the family of a Duke patient, Amalan Iyengar, who was diagnosed with Wiskott-Aldrich syndrome — a rare, genetic disease that is fatal in infancy if untreated, and typically requires a bone marrow transplant.
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Amalan, now a freshman at N.C. State University, had the idea of combining his love for Scrabble with support for the Duke program that saved his life.
This year’s 54 competitors battled in four divisions. Here’s a look at the top divisional finishers:
1st Place — Michelle Phan, Philadelphia, Pa.
2nd Place — Lisa Marsh, Greensboro
3rd Place — Krishna Rajagopal, Smith Middle School, Chapel Hill (6th grader)
CSW (International Lexicon) Tournament
1st Place — Sam Rosin, UNC-Chapel Hill
2nd Place — Kevin Bowerman, UNC-Chapel Hill
Main Event/Expert Division
1st Place — Clay Daniel, Charlottesville, Va.
2nd Place — Rahn McKeown, Philadelphia
3rd Place — Randy Hersom, High Point
Main Event/Intermediate Division
1st Place — Bruce Shuman, Wilmington, NC
2nd Place — David Klionsky, Durham
3rd Place — Matt Milliken, Durham