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Playing for a purpose: Dublin teens start nonprofit to benefit rare disease research

Crossovers for Cures co-founders practice in Dublin (WSYX).{ }
Crossovers for Cures co-founders practice in Dublin (WSYX).
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A group of Dublin teenagers are playing basketball for a purpose; using their love of the game to bring the community together for a good cause.

"Basketball has been a huge part of my life so to be able to do something that we feel is worthwhile with it is amazing," Henry Guerrera said.

Guerrera is one of the five teens who started the nonprofit called Crossovers for Cures, raising money to benefit the medical research of rare and perplexing diseases.

"I think our mission is really harnessing something that we really love, which is basketball and finding a way to apply it to greater things," Dustin He, another co-founder, said.

The mission is personal for the group, inspired by co-founder Drew Gunnoe's little brother Reid.

"He got sick when he was 3-and-a-half, and it was pretty rough back then, but he’s made a miraculous recovery, he’s done really well he’s even been back in school," Gunnoe said.

Reid suffers from seizures and has had five major brain surgeries.

The group decided all the money from their first charity tournament, called Elevate 4 Epilepsy, would go to the F.A.C.E.S. organization, dedicated to finding a cure for epilepsy and seizures, that was founded by Reid's neurosurgeon in New York.

"he’s a fighter, he’s really strong and he will get through it most of the time, so we just need to be there for him at all times and each other and that’s really how he keeps us going," Gunnoe said.

The teens hope that they will inspire other kids their age to get involved and give back.

"I think age, I don’t think that should be an inhibitor of people going out and trying new things and seeing what you can do for your community and the people around you," He said.

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The Elevate 4 Epilepsy charity basketball tournament is July 30 and 31 at Elevate Basketball Academy, 6615 Dublin Center Drive.

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