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17 Strong Foundation reveals three 'Victory Trip' recipients - KSBY.com | San Luis Obispo and Santa Barbara Area News

17 Strong Foundation reveals three 'Victory Trip' recipients

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Before Arroyo Grande native Ryan Teixeira passed away, he started the 17 Strong Foundation with a primary purpose of planning and funding Victory Trips for young adults who have suffered the trauma of catastrophic illness. 

It was inspired after Ryan was denied a Make-A-Wish trip because of his age.  

Thursday night, the Teixeira Family and 17 Strong Foundation board members revealed the non-profits first three recipients of a Victory Trip.

The recipients were: Mellissa Matheson, a breast cancer survivor, Jimmy Aldridge, a colon cancer survivor, and Ryan MacKereth, a testicular cancer survivor.

Matheson will be going to the Caribbean. "It's amazing. I mean, it's everything. After going through that and having three kids you don't really get to jump on a plane and go to the Caribbean," Matheson said.

MacKereth is headed to Alaska for his Victory Trip. "It's such great awareness to know that people who go through cancer have these issues get some awareness afterward," MacKereth said. "It feels so good to be given this. I can't fathom it."

Aldridge chose Tokyo as his destination. "Keep your head up, charities and organizations like this have your back. So just stay positive," Aldridge said.

All of the recipients were treated at the Mission Hope Cancer Center and recommended as recipients from some of the hospital's nurses and doctors.

Ryan's parents Steve and Holly Teixeira were honored to make Ryan's vision turn into reality.

"What sets us apart from anybody else is we want to help people who beat the disease," Steve said. 

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