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(AUDIO): Hooligan Charitable Riding Group raises money for Ashland teen who’s battled cancer

(AUDIO): Hooligan Charitable Riding Group raises money for Ashland teen who’s battled cancer

15-year-old Brooklyn Smith of Ashland and members of the Hooligan Charitable Riding Group pose during Saturday’s fundraiser at Woody’s in Ashland (photo courtesy of Josh Smith’s family)

More than 100 bikers from across mid-Missouri and other supporters gathered Saturday in Ashland to raise money for a 15-year-old Ashland girl who’s undergoing treatment for cancer.

The Hooligan Charitable Riding Group organized Saturday’s poker run and fundraiser for Brooklyn Smith, who’s been an active softball player and dedicated student. Brooklyn’s father, Zimmer Radio employee Josh Smith, describes the turnout as overwhelming.

“Our family has been overwhelmed by love and support and people that want to see our daughter do well and that have really carried us this first nine months. It’s a two-and-a-half year journey,” Smith says.

Brooklyn will continue to undergo treatment through December of 2024. She’s been treated at MU Health’s Children’s Hospital in Columbia. Her father Josh is thanking the Hooligan riding group for organizing the event.

“The Hooligan Charitable Riding Group is a collection of men and women who have hearts the size of Texas, man. They do so much for so many families. I’ve worked with them before (at Zimmer Radio). But they are kind and generous, they don’t ask for anything,” Smith says.

The Hooligan’s and other supporters stopped Saturday in Portland, Missouri and at Jake’s in Columbia, before circling back to Woody’s in Ashland, where it began. Mr. Smith tells listeners that Brooklyn is currently in remission.

“It took her 88 days to get all of the cancerous cells out of her body, after 88 days that she got scans and they couldn’t find a single cell of cancer, which is wonderful. She’s gained all the weight back that she lost, her hair is starting to come back finally. But she’s going through treatment, that’s how we always put it: she’s going through treatment,” says Smith.

The Hooligan’s and other organizers are still calculating how much money was raised during the event.