Dat Dads cook-off raises more than $27K for cancer victims

More than $27,800 was raised at last Saturday’s (Aug. 19) Cooking for a Cause pastalaya cook-off at the West Bank Bridge Park, benefitting the families of Luling’s Ann Martinez and Hahnville’s Rebecca Tassara.

Martinez is battling breast cancer. Tassara passed away last week after her own battle with the illness. The fundraiser was held to help their families offset medical costs and expenses.

Twenty four teams entered the cook-off, which was coordinated by Dat Dads’ Club of Luling. Group co-founder Claude Adams estimated there were between 500 and 1,000 people that attended to try the delicious food and donate to a good cause.

“The reward of all of the hard work put into making this event a success was evident just through walking through the crowds on Saturday,” Adams said. “Everyone was having a great time for a great cause and we couldn’t be happier to help those two elements come together.”

All of the proceeds for the event will go to the beneficiaries; costs for the event were paid for by Dat Dads Club membership fees.

Tassara, who passed away at the age of 38, is survived by her husband and four children.

Martinez, 31, was diagnosed in April with invasive ductal adenocarcinoma, an aggressive, rare form of breast cancer. She and her husband have two young children.

Dat Dads’ Club is a non-profit group of Willowdale and Mimosa residents who came together with a shared vision of helping others. This is the third fundraiser the group has hosted. Adams said the club hopes to make the pastalaya fundraiser an annual event.

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