Fourteen year-old Justin Friedlander had one amazing summer. In an effort to raise brain tumor awareness and funding for medical research, Justin shot thousands of baskets, including a few with President of the United States. Learn more about Justin and who else is helping him fulfill his quest.
While many kids his age were busy doing the typical things that 14 year olds do, Justin Friedlander was up to something completely different this past summer – raising awareness for brain tumors and the National Brain Tumor Society (NBTS). As both a basketball enthusiast and a brain tumor patient, Justin felt compelled after his diagnosis in the spring of 2009 to bring attention to the brain tumor cause and all those who have one.
With the help of his family and NBTS, Justin established "Justin's Quest" last year. The core of the quest is for Justin to shoot a basket for every person diagnosed with a primary brain tumor in the U.S. each year – approximately 63,000 baskets – and, in the process, bring national attention to a disease that normally does not make it into the spotlight. In pursuit of his goal, Justin took his quest to the highest stage this summer when he shot hoops with the most powerful person on the planet, President Barack Obama. "It was simply awesome," Justin stated. "Hopefully this will help get this disease the attention it deserves."
So, what’s next for Justin?
He is currently one-third of the way toward his goal, but is looking forward to shooting his last basket at NBA Jam Session during NBA All Star week in Los Angeles in February. Details are still being developed, but in the meantime Justin's focus is on shooting hoops as quickly as he can – either on his own or through the involvement of interested individuals, community-based groups, or sports teams. In fact, the Washington Wizards professional basketball team recently offered to donate all of its baskets from their games starting with the season opener on October 28 and up to the All-Star break. "I can’t thank them enough," stated Friedlander. "This will go a long way toward making my dream of going to Los Angeles come true."
For more information about Justin’s Quest or to learn how you can get involved, please visit www.JustinsQuest.com.