McArtor Organizes T-Shirt Fundraiser for Philippines
Junior Gabbi McArtor

Junior Gabbi McArtor

Nov. 19, 2013

NORMAL, Ill. - While Illinois State soccer junior Gabbi McArtor made history Saturday, playing all 110 minutes as ISU advanced to the second round of the NCAA Tournament for the first time in school history, her parents and extended family followed along from over 8,000 miles away as they continued to recover from the typhoon that slammed their homeland.

While Gabbi was born in the United States, both of her parents, John and Rosario, grew up in the Philippines. Both eventually moved to the U.S., which is where they raised their family, but moved back to the archipelago in the Pacific Ocean in 2012.

The couple lives in Manila, which was mostly unaffected by the weather. However, John's cousins live in Tacloban, an area that suffered some devastating effects. The McArtors were able to help evacuate their extended family to Manila, which is when they saw first-hand the damage done by the storm.

"Their daughter started crying, because they hadn't eaten in so long," Gabbi said, relaying what her mom told her. "They were very thankful. My mom said all they had was the clothes on their back and a small backpack. It was horrible."

Inspired by the plight of her family, Gabbi and soccer graduate assistant coach Katie Baumgardner began discussing ways to help. The pair eventually decided on a t-shirt drive, making a goal to collect 1,000 shirts.

 

 

"My mom told me that all my dad's family had was the clothes on their back," Gabbi said. "Everything from their houses were ruined. It's in the water, it's on the ground, it's just not there anymore. Some type of clothing would definitely help them a lot."

Three drop zones have been set up around campus - Room 221 in Horton Field House, the Karin L. Bone Athletics Study Center and the north entrance of Redbird Arena. Monetary donations to help with cleaning and shipping of the clothes can also be delivered to Baumgardner's office, Horton 211A. The last day of collection will be Thursday, Dec. 12.

McArtor and the Redbirds became the first team from the Missouri Valley Conference to move past the first round of the NCAA Tournament, advancing by Louisville on PKs, 4-3, after playing to a 1-1 draw. ISU will continue its run with a match at No. 3 seed Michigan in Ann Arbor, Mich., Friday at 6 p.m., CST.

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