Sean Fox was a true champion on and off the lacrosse field. Winner of five national titles as a player and coach at Hobart College, Fox learned valuable life lessons from the sport and promoted them as a successful executive and devoted husband and father. Although, sadly, Sean passed away from liposarcoma in August 2021, his son Connor, along with friends Ben Baranker and Tommy Hale, followed his lead in leveraging lacrosse for maximal social impact by raising funds to defy cancer through the Hope Street Foundation.
Recently, the foundation made a gift of more than $1 million to establish The Sean Fox Fund in support of liposarcoma research led by George Demetri, MD, director of the Sarcoma Center, senior vice president for experimental therapeutics, and the Quick Family Chair in Medical Oncology at Dana-Farber. This generous gift was generated through Hope Street’s “Lacrosse for Life” fundraiser on April 2–3, in which players from 43 college programs nationwide had their heads shaved, with the foundation contributing $1,000 per participant.
The Hope Street Foundation’s fundraising success springs from the closeness of the lacrosse community and the leadership of co-founders Baranker, Fox, and Hale, who were classmates and teammates at Brown University. Grounded in their deep personal experience with and commitment to philanthropy, they established the foundation while living together in their college house on Hope Street in Providence, R.I. After reaching out to friends on collegiate lacrosse teams across the country to support their cause, their call to action quickly spread through word of mouth like a ball passed around for the best shot on goal. And like a score on the field, this winning effort may bring closer their hopeful vision of victory against liposarcoma.
In pursuing this mission, Baranker, Fox, and Hale are thrilled to team up with Demetri because he and his colleagues in Dana-Farber’s Sarcoma Center are such dedicated and accomplished leaders in their field. Demetri, in turn, appreciates the foundation’s strong partnership in propelling progress. “Ben, Connor, and Tommy are providing a beacon of hope to patients with liposarcoma through the innovative science they are accelerating, and we are very grateful for the trust and support from this new generation of philanthropists to our mission,” said Demetri.
For the three friends behind the foundation, advancing liposarcoma research and care is as important as sticks are to lacrosse because, given its rarity, liposarcoma receives less funding and attention than other cancers, yet is no less devastating to patients like Sean Fox and families like his. “We are proud to support Dana-Farber’s Sarcoma Center and hope others will continue to join this effort,” said Connor Fox. “Even small strides help to drive significant impact, and with everyone’s help Dr. Demetri and his team can do more than ever to improve the lives of patients and families.”