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Firefighters to host benefit ping-pong tournament

 

Oxford firefighters spend a lot of time at their respective fire stations while waiting for calls. To pass the time lately, many have been wielding a paddle and playing ping-pong, which not only provides fun but also keeps them physically active.

Next week, their love of ping-pong may also help improve the quality of life for those fighting cancer.

The Oxford Fire Department, in conjunction with the Lafayette County Fire Department and the Oxford Park Commission, will be holding a ping-pong tournament with all proceeds going to the Baptist Cancer Center’s Mammogram Assistance Program.

The tournament will be at 2 p.m. on Oct. 23 at the Oxford Activity Center. The public is welcome to come and watch the tournament at no cost.

Sammy Woodall, a firefighter with both OFD and LCFD, came up with the idea for the tournament and talked to the heads of the departments.

“They told me to go for it,” Woodall said. “We have a lot of ping pong tables at the fire stations and thought this would be a neat way to raise money for a good cause.”

The Mammogram Assistance Program helps provide mammograms for the uninsured or underinsured as well assistance with things like gas to get to and from their treatments.

“It’s amazing how many lives they might have saved by giving someone $20 a week to go back and forth to get their treatments,” Woodall said.

The cost to enter the tournament is $20 a person and one doesn’t need to be a firefighter to participate.

“It’s open to anyone,” Woodall said.

The firefighters have invited the Oxford and University Police Departments and the Lafayette County Sheriff’s Department to participate.

Those entering the tournament should sign up at any city or county fire department.

“You don’t have to pay the $20 until the day of the tournament,” Woodall said.

Woodall is looking for more ping-pong tables and is asking the community for help.

“If anyone has a table we can borrow, we’ll pick it up and bring it back and take good care of it,” he said.