A day of rugby in memory of Holly
BLOOD, sweat and tears are always an accepted part of inter-city rivalry when Coffs Harbour Snappers and Port Macquarie Pirates butt heads.
Players will on Saturday leave a measure of all three substances on the turf at Jung Quarries Rugby Park but on the sidelines it will only be blood that matters.
The two clubs will salute the memory of Holly Butcher and start a challenge to support the Australian Red Cross Blood Service and the charity set up in her name.
When Holly died in January of Ewing's sarcoma her story touched millions around the world when she left a final letter on her Facebook page urging people to "do a good deed for humanity (and myself) and start regularly donating blood."
Holly, 27, said donations of blood prolonged her life by more than a year and she wanted those left behind to continue the quest to increase the level of contributions.
"A year I will be forever grateful that I got to spend here on Earth with my family, friends and dog," she wrote.
"A year I had some of the greatest times of my life."
Within a few days the post was shared more that 17,000 times.
With parents Ron and Wendy and the Butcher family heavily involved in rugby, it was only natural the two clubs playing today would show support.
All proceeds from Back To Beaches day will go to the Doin' It For Holly Red25 Group set up in memory and players and supporters have been urged to go all the way, roll up their sleeves and donate blood.
Red25 Group is a life-saving program that unites members of common interest to ensure 25 per cent of Australia's blood donations are secured.
Doin' It For Holly allows donations made in Holly's name to be tallied up, sparking a challenge between the club presidents of Snappers and Pirates.
Starting starting and running until the semi finals, blood donations will be counted and the overall winning club claims bragging rights.