KIMBERTON — Robert J. Hogga Sr. was a husband, father and beloved community member in Phoenixville.
Hogga lost his battle on July 20, 2012, about nine months after he was diagnosed with pancreatic cancer.
A golf tournament is being held in memory of Hogga and to raise money for the American Association for Cancer Research through the R.J. Hogga Foundation the family has started. The tournament will be held on Friday, May 10, at Kimberton Golf Club with a shotgun start at 10 a.m. Although the tournament is full to the max (140 players), community members can attend a beef and beer at the VFW after the tournament where raffles will be offered.
Hogga was very active in the community with his involvement with the Phoenixville VFW Post 1564 where he ran the Voices of Democracy essay program in partnership with the high school. He served as an umpire for Phoenixville Youth Babe Ruth League and had served as a football umpire in the area. Hogga was also a photographer.
Hogga’s sons, Bob and Jon, are organizing the event.
Bob said the idea for the day is for everyone to have fun and raise awareness of pancreatic cancer.
“You don’t truly understand it until you go through it,” Hogga said. “You see struggles and battles person goes through while they are fighting the disease. The majority (of victims) don’t find it until it’s stage 4. There are no signs until it’s really progressed in its stages.”
He said hosting the golf tournament is a way the family can give back to the community also.
Hogga said the community was very supportive during his father’s battle with cancer and after he passed away.
He said his family attended the Phantom football team’s season opener where a purple banner was wrapped around the R. J. Photography sign and the banner was kept there during the season.
His father was also remembered during this year’s the Phoenixville Youth Babe Ruth League opening ceremonies. His mother, Kathy, was given flowers to place on a memorial stone that’s located next to the field. Bob threw out the first pitch for the baseball league and his sister, Jacki, threw out the first pitch for softball.
Jon Hogga said the golf tournament is the first event his family has ever organized and they plan to hold more events for the R. J. Hogga Foundation.
“It’s not saving our dad’s life but it can save someone else’s dad’s life,” he said about the foundation events.
He said it’s been a lot of work to organize the golf outing, but it’s been worth it.
“Before our dad got sick we never understood what cancer was like,” Jon Hogga said. “When you see what someone struggles with it gives you a different respect (for what cancer victims go through.)”
He said he is anxious and nervous for the day. He hopes everyone has a great time.
Jon Hogga said the family is so thankful for everyone that is participating in the golf outing or beef and beer event.
Kathy and Jacki, will also be participating in the golf tournament.
For more information about the R. J. Hogga Foundation, visit www.rjhoggafoundation. People interested in helping the organization can also call Hogga’s sons, Bob, 610-212-3907, or Jon, 610-613-1329.