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Local family sets out to raise $8 million for pediatric cancer research

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By Tanae Howard

INDIANAPOLIS - The Symmes family knows what it's like to lose a child to cancer. So in honor of being Pediatric Cancer Awareness Month, the family is putting on several fundraisers to help reach their goal of $8 million.

The Pink Label Event is one of their most successful fundraisers. Local boutiques donated brand new items to be sold at a reduced price. Others donated gently used items as well.

All the money raised will go toward the Caroline Symmes Endowment for Pediatric Research.

Caroline died when she was 5. She had a passion for fashion and loved the color pink. Her mom Libby says she will still fight for other kids.

"When you're told by your daughter's doctor that she's going to die because they can't do any research. They have no resources then that strikes you and you have got to help other families because we lost Caroline to a disease that should have been treatable," said Libby Symmes.

Cancer is one of the leading killers of children in America. More than 20 percent of pediatric cancer victims do not survive. Riley Hospital for Children agree that research could benefit these children. They've teamed up with the Symmes family to help with funding for a research center through federal funds.

"Riley and the researchers and clinical physicians are able to take those dollars and broaden that for national research grants take that money and make it much larger in this effort," said Jason Mueller of the Riley Children's Foundation.

The Symmes family says they can't reach their goal without corporate sponsorships. But in the meantime they'll keep raising funds through unique ideas like the Pink Label Event.

To take advantage of the three day shopping experience head to the Hamilton Crossing Centre in Carmel Friday, September 26 from 10 a.m. - 6 p.m. and Saturday, September 27 from 10 a.m. - 3 p.m.

To learn more about the Caroline Symmes Endowment fund, click here.