The most compelling story of the Minnesota high school football season was Wayzata quarterback Sasha Doran, who seven years ago was living in a Russian orphanage. I wrote about Sasha in September and you can read that story by CLICKING HERE.
After that piece was published in September, the story of Sasha and his two older sisters spread quickly. My story was reprinted in newspapers around the country and has been read by many people, including a large number who have been involved with adoption. I have received emails from some of those folks, and their response is always the same: "What a wonderful story about a wonderful family."
ESPN followed Sasha, his family and his teammates during the football season and also will follow Sasha and his parents, John and Mary Ellen Doran of Plymouth, when they return to the Pechory Orphanage in late December to retrace his journey. The network will air Sasha's story sometime in January.
When the Dorans return to the orphanage, they will take much-needed essential items -- socks, toiletries and undergarments, etc. -- to the 250 children living there. Fundraising efforts are underway, including a website, a bank account and a special event this Saturday night.
All the details can be found at http://www.helpsashagiveback.com/
Donations are welcome at: Help Sasha Give Back, c/o Voyager Bank,10653 Wayzata Boulevard,Minnetonka MN 55305
A fundraising event will be held at the VFW in Hamel on Saturday from 7 to 11:30 p.m. There will be music, food, drinks and a silent auction. KARE-TV morning anchor Tim McNiff (who also is a volunteer assistant football coach at Wayzata) will be the master of ceremonies. I will be there, too, and I'm sure it will be a wonderful time.
This is a great cause.
John Millea is on Twitter at twitter.com/stribjohn