USF student takes on cancer -- by fishing

- Savannah Billet is fishing for the fight. She's teaming up with two of her USF St. Petersburg classmates for her latest mission to make a difference.

"The boys, Hunter and Garrett, love fishing,” said Savannah. "They eat, sleep and breathe fishing, so we wanted to put both our loves together and we started this fishing tournament for childhood cancer awareness."

The lure for Savannah isn't fishing; rather it's her passion to crush cancer. She's been working at this since seventh grade.

"I started doing neuroblastoma benefits because of a little boy name Esra, who passed away at 800 days old,” she continued. "I couldn't wrap my head around that -- babies were dying for cancer. We need to change that and we need to find a cure for that."

A year later, Savannah's aunt was diagnosed with brain cancer. She lost her battle in 2013.

Savannah's passion has been lifelong commitment and she wants to make it a career. That's what she has begun study at USF-St. Petersburg.

"I want to keep planning events like this,” she explained.

Right now Savannah's focus is with USF's Living Learning Community. It's a program where students have a chance to live, study, and learn with others who share similar interests.

"She seems to keep escalating to another level every time,” said professor Benjamin Smet.  "She's definitely unique in that regard. She comes with a lot of energy and enthusiasm and passion for her ideas and the things she believes in and stands for.

"She's one of our best case studies for that."

Savannah and her crew have already reeled in some great prizes for this weekend’s inaugural tournament. It's open to everyone in the Bay Area. All you need to do is register online, have a boat, and join Savannah for her fishing for the fight.

"Always wanting to pay it forward and make a difference every day,” Savannah added. "That's my goal in life."


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