The Mike Church Show World HQ
The Mike Church Show World HQ

A Story of Cancer, Courage and Mike’s 2015 Hogs For The Cause Campaign

Please consider a donation for Mike’s 2015 efforts to raise money benefitting families with kids suffering brain cancers-Click to donate, buy tickets and Death Chefs merchandise

Announcing the 2015 Official, Death Chefs, Hogs For The Cause, Collector Edition T-Shirt. Order yours today. Together we can do something great!
Announcing the 2015 Official, Death Chefs, Hogs For The Cause, Collector Edition T-Shirt. Order yours today. Together we can do something great!

Mandeville, LA – Exclusive Transcript – (originally published 19 March, 2014) “There’s a young man, 17, from Mississippi.  He’s being treated at Children’s Hospital.  He’s been battling one form of brain cancer or another since he was four years old.  His father passed away about six weeks ago, quite suddenly and unexpectedly.  As you can imagine, any one of those two things can be absolutely devastating to a young man.  I tend to think of things that could happen and send someone’s life in a tailspin, and certainly fighting cancer for 13 years and losing your father at a young age — he’s also legally blind because of all the surgeries and treatments he’s had.  However, when we met this young man, this was probably one of the most upbeat and amazing people that I’ve ever met in my entire life.  He had no regrets.  He had no “woe is me.” Rene Louapre, Hogs For The Cause Co-Founder.  Check out today’s transcript for the rest…

CLICK DONATE TO MIKE’S EFFORTS WITH A $50, $100 OF $500 DONATION FOR ONE OF MIKE’S 2015 THE DEATH CHEFS T-SHIRTS, BALL CAPS OR CHEF COATS. OF COURSE CASH IN ANY AMOUNT IS WELCOME. THANKS TO ALL

Begin Mike Church Show Transcript

Mike:  In the meantime, let’s go to the Dude Maker Hotline and say hello to a good and dear friend, one of the gentlemen that is responsible for the founding of the event that you hear me yammering about all the time about this time of year the last three years called Hogs for the Cause.  You can find them online HogsForTheCause.org.  There is still time to buy tickets to the event, still time to buy tickets to the seafood jubilee Friday night if you’d like.  I’ll let Rene tell you a little bit about that.  There’s still time to donate on my site and pick up Death Chefs merchandise.  Go to MikeChurch.com and click on any of the Shop Mike store links.  That will take you to the Founders Tradin’ Post.  Click the Clothing tab.  Under that you’ll see Mike’s Death Chefs.  You can make a cash donation in any amount, and many of you have.  Keep it coming.  We still have four days of full fundraising left.  We’d like to welcome to the program for the first time, co-founder Rene Louapre, who is one of the founding fathers of the Hogs for the Cause.  Rene, how are you this morning, my brother?

Rene Louapre:  I’m doing great.  How are you?  Thank you for having me on the air.

Mike:  You’re very, very welcome.  You know, a question I never got to ask Becker, and I’ll ask it of you since we have been talking this up for about three years, in the first event that you guys did however long ago it was, did you two actually conspire and cook a hog and drink the beer as well or did you just supervise your drunk friends?

Louapre:  Some of the first year we actually had to do all the work.  We cooked a hog that year.  I cooked a hog because I had told Becker that I knew how to do it, which really just meant that I had seen someone else do it before.  We cooked a whole hog.  2009 was our first event.  We drank most of the beer just because we didn’t have that many people out there.  It was quite the chore to figure out how to cook a pig and drink all the beer, but we were able to do it.

Mike:  I’ll never forget, the first time I showed up was I 2011.  This is when the Hogs for the Cause started to get really organized.  It’s to the point now where you have people walking around the day before or the week of with surveying equipment and surveying plots, taking cans of spray paint and marking the plot numbers and everything.  We show up and it was really late, about 11:00 on Friday night.  We couldn’t find anyone to help us at that point in time.  We stumbled upon you.  There you were with some of your hog buddies and you were drinking beer.  You said: Oh, yeah, I’ll tell you where your plot is.  Follow me!  I told my buddies Bill and Garrett: I think we’re gonna fit right in here, guys.

hogs for the causeLouapre:  That sounds about right.  I’ve been known to enjoy a beer when the work is done at the end of the day.  You mentioned plotting off.  You talk about our teams.  Our teams have really helped fuel our growth, and there are special parts of it in particular.  Laura, a friend of mine, is an architect.  She’s a five-year team competitor this year.  She came out the first year and I had laid out the grounds.  It sort of looked like that old “Don’t Tread On Me” flag.  It was all broken up.  It looked like someone who has no idea how to plot a field.  Ever since then, Laura has taken over.  She designs the field and she marks it off.  She gives a lot of her time to it.  That’s why it looks so good, not because of us.  It’s because of help from a lot of people.

CLICK DONATE TO MIKE’S EFFORTS WITH A $50, $100 OF $500 DONATION FOR ONE OF MIKE’S 2014 THE DEATH CHEFS T-SHIRTS, BALL CAPS OR CHEF COATS. OF COURSE CASH IN ANY AMOUNT IS WELCOME. THANKS TO ALL

Mike:  Yeah, it does look good.  One of the reasons I wanted to have Rene on the program today, we have four days of fundraising left, and a couple days left for you to make your plans to get down to New Orleans to City Pork for Friday and Saturday’s events.  Thirdly, since this will be the third year we’ve been on air here and we’ve been talking about this, and many of you have already contributed mightily to the Cause part of it, I wanted Rene to share one of the stories, if he would, from a family that has actually benefitted from a grant that came from the Hogs for the Cause Foundation. Pick any one you want and go with it, brother.

One of the things that kind of struck me… [h]e would go to appointments and get stickers.  Instead of just putting stickers on him and throwing them away when he was done, he would hold those stickers.  Now he has a collection of something like 250,000 stickers, 50,000 business cards.  He’s an artist.

Louapre:  We’ve helped 50 families and they all have stories.  One that we had just the other week, to me it’s one of the most powerful and really represents what we do.  There’s a young man, 17, from Mississippi.  He’s being treated at Children’s Hospital.  He’s been battling one form of brain cancer or another since he was four years old.  His father passed away about six weeks ago, quite suddenly and unexpectedly.  As you can imagine, any one of those two things can be absolutely devastating to a young man.  I tend to think of things that could happen and send someone’s life in a tailspin, and certainly fighting cancer for 13 years and losing your father at a young age — he’s also legally blind because of all the surgeries and treatments he’s had.  However, when we met this young man, this was probably one of the most upbeat and amazing people that I’ve ever met in my entire life.  He had no regrets.  He had no “woe is me.”  I know we all do it.  If something doesn’t go your way, you’re down in the dumps.  You walk around shuffling your feet with your head down.  This young man was fantastic, upbeat.  He was so excited for everything that had happened to him and all the blessings he says he’s had in his life.

One of the things that kind of struck me, and then after reflecting on it for a few days I kind of understood why he was so attached to him, he loved to collect business cards and stickers.  When we met him he asked us for our business cards.  He showed us a big stack of stickers he had in his pocket.  He started doing this at an early age, when he was four and going to see tons of doctors.  It was something to maybe take his mind off of or to help process, collecting the business cards of the nurses and doctors and specialists he was seeing, everyone who came in to help him.  He would go to appointments and get stickers.  Instead of just putting stickers on him and throwing them away when he was done, he would hold those stickers.  Now he has a collection of something like 250,000 stickers, 50,000 business cards.  He’s an artist.  He just wanted to tell us how blessed he was and how excited he was for all the things that he’s had come his way and all the God-given ability he has.  That, to me, was just a fascinating young man to meet.

You can support Hogs For The Cause in many ways First by attending the event and buying tickets here: Second by supporting Mike’s Fundraising efforts through his Hogs competition team The Death Chefs here. Third by donating directly to the Hogs Foundation here (please credit The Death Chefs for ticket purchases)

You meet him and it was like: We’ve got to go out and raise way more money this year.  We’ve got to help more families.  The money we give to his family, they’re able to help pay for rent, kind of stabilize their lives a little bit financially.  I don’t think we do much work to emotionally or medically help people, but I know financially we help a lot of families.  There’s a moment when we deliver a check to a family, and the kids are sometimes too little to understand money, but you can kind of see a look in the parents’ eyes when they take a look at the check.  I know if I got a check for a couple thousand dollars right now, and I’m very blessed and well-off, I’d still be pretty happy.  You see these families get a check and you can see a brief moment of a deep breath, that things are going to be financially okay.  That, to me, is what we’re all about.  We have a lot of fun.  We try to keep the mood light because they are very serious diseases we’re dealing with.  We try to keep the mood really light so people want to come out and have a blast and still be doing something for others.  That’s what we’ve always tried to do.

Mike:  Hogs for the Cause, this Friday and Saturday at City Pork.  It’s renamed City Pork for that day.  You can still get tickets at HogsForTheCause.org.  You could make a donation, if you’d like to, ladies and gentlemen, year-round, 24/7/365 at HogsForTheCause.org.  As you know, I work with Rene and Becker, but I’m just one of 89 other teams this year, Rene?

Louapre:  Yeah, 90 teams total.

Mike:  89 other teams, and coming from as far away, I believe you guys have somebody coming from either Michigan or Canada that Becker told me.

Louapre:  We’ve got a team from Colorado.  We’ve got some teams from South Dakota.  We’ve got people from Chicago, all across the South, South Carolina, Georgia, Tennessee, Alabama, Mississippi.  There’s an army descending on New Orleans pulling smokers and ice chests full of tasty pork products.

Mike:  An army of smokers, that’s my kind of army.  At the end of the day, nobody is dead and you’ve got lots to eat.  That’s a great army.  Folks, again, you heard just one of the stories.  In any given year, if you don’t mind, just a rough estimate, how many families can the Hogs, with the amount of funds you raise in one year, how many can you help?  I know you’re limited to how far the money stretches.  Just an estimate of how many in the last year may have benefitted from the Hogs?

Drew Brees poses with a Hogs for Cause beneficiary
Drew Brees poses with Hogs for Cause beneficiary Benjamin Surrat

Louapre:  In the last year, I think we’ve done about 30 families with direct grants.  We’ve also established a fund at Children’s Hospital for families who have children who are sick but not necessarily pediatric brain cancer.  There are some other really nasty things.  I think what’s most important is we have no idea of how many we can help.  The thing that we’re most proud of is we’ve never had to turn down a grant of a deserving family due to lack of funding.  We keep our funding period going all year.  That’s really a testament.  Becker is the financial guy.  He’s a lot better with money than I am.  He’s got our charity in great financial shape.  We’re incredibly proud of the fact that from the time we get a grant in the door and it’s properly vetted and all checks out, it’s usually about one week until a family has a check in their hands.  That’s the kind of response we like to be able to do.  We like to say as many families as we can we’re going to help, as long as they’re deserving.  That’s what we want to do.  There are tons of these families across the country.  We want them to know about us and we want to be able to help every single one of them.

Mike:  HogsForTheCause.org or you can go to MikeChurch.com and contribute through The Death Chefs, our team.  I’m happy that you just made the effort, and hope to see many of you this Friday and Saturday at the annual event, keeping Hogs for the Cause and the families receiving the grants and all those in your prayers.  Rene, as always, brother, thank you very much.  I don’t think that you and Becker get enough thanks for what it is and for the extraordinary amount of time that you must put into this.  I have a friend who’s a journalist and a lawyer.  She keeps tabs on these sorts of events and organizations like Hogs.  One of her big pet peeves is she can’t stand to see celebrities out there hawking charities and then seeing they gobbled up 88 percent of all the money they raised for themselves and their friends to tool around the country in Leer jets.  She was very happy to report to me, she said: Mike, I checked your buddies out just on a whim, because I saw them on your site.  I actually made a donation because their financials are as in order as any I have ever seen.  Congratulations on picking a great charity.

Louapre:  Thanks.  I can’t accept any credit for that.  That really is Becker and our treasurer.  They have our books and make sure we give out as much money as we possibly can.  We never are going to say no.  I thank all of your listeners.  You’ve had a tremendous response for your team.  I thank all of them out there who have already contributed, and all of those out there who are looking to contribute.  I’ve got to tell you, Mike’s not in first place in fundraising right now.  It’s up to you guys to get him there.  You’re close but we’ve got to do a little bit more work.

CLICK DONATE TO MIKE’S EFFORTS WITH A $50, $100 OF $500 DONATION FOR ONE OF MIKE’S 2014 THE DEATH CHEFS T-SHIRTS, BALL CAPS OR CHEF COATS. OF COURSE CASH IN ANY AMOUNT IS WELCOME. THANKS TO ALL

End Mike Church Show Transcript

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4 Responses
  1. imahriman

    If you are interested and can’t get them. I will burn the cd’s and send them to you….Be warned I will fill the empty pages with talent….

  2. imahriman

    Mike I know I’m a broken record. I speak of music and recall you no longer partake. In the last 5 years you have given me hope. I just hold on. Waited 39 years and have no ideal pushing 46 why she still with me. For some of us questions are easier than answers. 6 years you’ll have to ask her. The poem and the song symmetry they go along. The mind borrows only what it means the illusion what it seems. The ego that burdens what it demeans. I will leave my less than college educated auto tech ass with “Haven”! My wife was divorced (yes a mortal sin) now stuck with me–Purgatory!! Her cousin from 1st marriage was Kevin Ayers. He sang for Haven. Yes a Christian band from the 80’s. Yes they had cd’s produced! I leave you with “Her Eyes Can’t Hide” or a song from another album “Murder”–the killing of an unborn child…

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