Upshaw fund supports medical research in Sierra

TRUCKEE — Five years after NFL Hall of Famer Gene Upshaw's sudden death from pancreatic cancer, his legacy lives on at a cancer treatment and medical research center atop the Sierra Nevada.

A memorial fund Upshaw's family started after he died helped finance the opening last summer of the Gene Upshaw Memorial Tahoe Forest Cancer Center in Truckee.

This year the fund expanded its support to the Tahoe Institute for Rural Health Research, where scientists are studying traumatic brain injury (TBI) — something near and dear to the former Oakland Raider who spoke out about concussions as a player and during 25 years as president of the NFL players' union.

Former Raiders Marcus Allen, Raymond Chester and Nolan Harrison were among those who participated in a recent golf tournament at Grays Crossing that has now raised $500,000 for the programs over the past four years.

"Trophies get old and rusty and dusty, but what you do for your fellow man is what's going to last," Allen told the San Francisco Chronicle (http://tinyurl.com/kkjkmd6).

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