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Arnold serving up tournament to raise awareness

Posted: May 13, 2014 - 11:25pm  |  Updated: May 14, 2014 - 12:20am
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Senior Brooke Arnold, who plays on Augusta Prep's tennis team, is organizing a tennis tournament for her senior project called "Serves for SIDS" to benefit the national Sudden Infant Death Syndrome organization. Sixteen years ago this spring, Brooke's brother passed away because of SIDS.   Jim Blaylock/STAFF
Jim Blaylock/STAFF
Senior Brooke Arnold, who plays on Augusta Prep's tennis team, is organizing a tennis tournament for her senior project called "Serves for SIDS" to benefit the national Sudden Infant Death Syndrome organization. Sixteen years ago this spring, Brooke's brother passed away because of SIDS.

 

Unlike many senior projects, Augusta Preparatory Day School’s Brooke Arnold is hoping to raise money for – and, more importantly – awareness about a cause.

Saturday at Augusta Prep, Arnold and her family will play host to what she hopes could turn into an annual event, a doubles tennis tournament called Serves for SIDS.

When Arnold was almost 3-years-old, her younger brother Austin passed away because of sudden infant death syndrome, or SIDS. He became the inspiration for her senior project.

“I thought about a tennis tournament idea and thinking about what causes or charities I’d want to donate to and it kind of just popped in my head – Serves for SIDS,” said the 18-year-old Arnold. “That’s really cool and nothing could be closer to my heart than that. Losing a little brother to it is one of the main reasons. It hit close to home.”

Arnold hopes to raise $900, with players charged $12 a head to compete, but the money is secondary in importance to her.

“The more I thought about it, reaching 50 to 60 people and their families that come out here and explaining what SIDS is and giving them the background of it could save tons of children’s lives,” said Arnold, who will talk about SIDS along with her parents. “We definitely will be explaining a lot during the day of what it is.”

Arnold has been working on it for a few months, trying to balance schoolwork and competing on the school’s tennis team. She plans to break the competition down by skill level and there are other games planned for those not competing on the court.

In the end, the informational portion of the day is what she hopes sticks with people. “If I can educate people on it and how to prevent it, it will be a successful day in my opinion,” she said.

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