Community hosts ‘Ballers Challenge’ in support of teen battling cancer

Community hosts ‘Ballers Challenge’ in support of teen battling cancer

COVINGTON, Tenn. (WMC) - A Covington teenager is battling cancer for the second time in his life, but he’s not doing it alone. His community is showing support, by changing an event that was planned months before just to help his family.

The Grizzlies are getting involved too.

Kids in Covington were dribbling and shooting for a chance at some special medals Saturday. But to the Covington community, those medals are secondary. Everyone showed up for Jackson Hughey.

“It’s a fun night, we want it to be a fun night. He enjoys sports, he loves sports. We wanted to do something that we know he would really enjoy,” said Joseph Mack, City of Covington Parks and Recreation.

Jackson Hughey is 16 years old and recently discovered he’s entering round two with Neuroblastoma -- a cancer found in nerve tissue.

Saturday’s skills challenge and three-point competition was originally planned to benefit a completely different cause.

“We were going to do this as a fundraiser for the local drug-free Tipton Organization but we decided, I talked to them and we all agreed that it would be good if we could do something for the family,” said Mack.

“It means a lot knowing my community has my back,” said Jackson Hughey.

On top of donations and a raffle benefiting the Hughey family, the event also had a silent auction with some big items.

The Memphis Grizzlies donated items including a team-signed basketball, but their support doesn’t stop there.

“Wednesday night he’s going to get an opportunity to be a ball boy for the Grizzlies and he’s going to spend some time with Ja Morant,” said Mack.

Jackson says he can't wait to be on an NBA court with his favorite NBA team.

He says he’s most looking forward to meeting Ja Morant.

“The Grizzlies it’s just phenomenal. Jackson is super excited about the game. So it’s just great we really appreciate it,” said Deanne Hughey, Jackson’s mother.

Despite Jackson facing a tough battle with cancer, the Jackson Hughey Baller's Challenge was a fun competition and a chance for a community to show how much they care.

“It’s just great to be in the community and to have everybody backing you because they keep us going. They always say you’re so strong! And I’m like I couldn’t do it without you,” said Deanne Hughey.

If you want to help the Hughey family, make your checks out to Jason Hughey or Jackson Hughey and send them to the Covington Sportsplex, located at 790 Bert Johnston Avenue in Covington.

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