—The House unanimously passed House Resolution 56, introduced by Rep. Todd Stephens (R-Montgomery), to declare Feb. 22, 2019, “Keith Valley Challenge Day” in Pennsylvania.
The Keith Valley Challenge is a 14-hour nonstop floor hockey marathon that began in 1977 to honor the memory of Billy Whitehead, an eighth-grade student who passed away due to a rare congenital heart defect.
Stephens, a past participant in the Keith Valley Challenge, praised the hard work and dedication of all participants over the last 42 years. “This is a very special event where kids help other kids who are less fortunate than themselves,” Stephens said.
The event began when, in Whitehead’s memory, the school staff and eighth-graders pledged to raise money on a yearly basis for St. Christopher’s Hospital for Children in Philadelphia. The marathon was renamed “The Keith Valley Challenge” in 1981 and students began to donate funds raised to additional charities.
Last year’s challenge raised $41,000, and over the last 42 years, Keith Valley students have raised and donated more than $1 million to 14 charities such as the American Cancer Society, the American Heart Association, the ALS Foundation, and the Ronald McDonald House. The 43rd Annual Keith Valley Challenge is scheduled to kick-off on Friday, Feb. 22. This year, students are raising money for the Make-A-Wish Foundation.
“Their dedication is an example of how to transform a tragic loss into something inspirational,” Stephens said.
Representative Todd Stephens
Pennsylvania House of Representatives
Media Contact: David Foster