MEDINA, Ohio - The Meadows Turkey Bowl set a record by raising $230,000 for a charitable organization while also helping out the family of a Conneaut man facing terminal cancer.
John Bigelow and his wife, Wendy, who have adopted five children from foster care, recently learned that cancer has spread to John's lungs and he may only have months to live.
On Thanksgiving, Bigelow made an emotional appearance at the home of Mike Meadows on Hood Road where the games are played.
He thanked the 40 players for their support and asked all of them for hugs.
"I just get on my knees and thank the Lord for all of you being here and everything that you're doing," Bigelow told the players.
Bigelow had a setback this week and was admitted to the Cleveland Clinic. He wasn't expected to be healthy enough to leave the hospital, but doctors allowed him to leave to attend the games.
"He wanted to be here and hug every one of the guys to show his appreciation and he was able to do that," said o Alan Mowrey, one of the Turkey Bowlers. "What ever happens in the future, his family is going to be a little more taken care of after today."
The Turkey Bowl is a fundraiser that contributes to the Saint Vincent de Paul Society annually. The $230,000 raised eclipsed last year's record of $190,000.
The games have been played for 26 years with the last 11 years serving as a fundraiser.
More than $1 million has been donated through the Turkey Bowl over the years.