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Craig Biggio Gets Roasted in an Unexpectedly Delightful Sunshine Kids Moment — Celebrating 40 Years of Helping Kids With Hall of Fame Laughs

This More Than $400,000 Houston Night is Sweet and Astros Filled

BY // 11.15.22

Major League Baseball Hall of Famer Craig Biggio had no idea that when he was being honored on the 40th anniversary of the Sunshine Kids that the praise would be laced with pans. When you are unexpectedly on stage with longtime buddies Jeff Bagwell and Brad Ausmus and your son Conor Biggio, you might guess that some gentle roasting was in store.

So it was when the Sunshine Kids honored Biggio during the nonprofit’s anniversary dinner on the Club Level at Minute Maid Park. Biggio has been a team player for the charity that provides exciting, positive group activities and opportunities for children with cancer “so they may once again do what kids are meant to do. . . have fun and celebrate life.”

Conor, Craig, Patty, Quinn and Cavan Biggio photo by Daniel Ortiz
The Biggio family — Conor, Craig & Patty, Quinn, Cavan — honorees at the Sunshine Kids 40th anniversary celebration (Photo by Daniel Ortiz)

Actually the night honored Biggio, who serves as Sunshine Kids National Spokesman, and his family — wife Patty, sons Conor and Cavan and daughter Quinn. But the Hall of Famer was the star.

“It’s my heart and soul. I’ve been involved with the Sunshine Kids for over 30 years so it’s something that I love. I love these kids and I’m happy to see so many of these people out here supporting them tonight,” Biggio tells PaperCity.

“If you’re in a situation where you can do it, you give back. And for me, the Sunshine Kids is a long personal story. I got introduced to cancer at a young age and I made a promise to the family that if I was ever in a situation to help and give back then I would. The Sunshine Kids kind of fell into our lap and we’ve had an unbelievable relationship ever since.”

A young boy in Biggio’s neighborhood on Long Island where he grew up died of leukemia and left the future baseball star with a lifelong mission.

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Julia Morales, Matt Clark photo by Daniel Ortiz
Julia Morales & Matt Clark at the Sunshine Kids 40th anniversary celebration (Photo by Daniel Ortiz)

With contributions still flowing in, the night had raised more than $400,000, thanks in no small part to presenting sponsors the Astros Foundation and Gordy & Sons. In fact, the Houston Astros had the World Series trophy on hand for photo ops and selfies.

Taking bow for the success were chairs Laura Moore and Don Sanders along with host committee members Glenda and Russell Gordy, Laurie and Bret Sanders, Isabel and Ignacaio Torras, and Jacqueline and Michael Kenneally.

The heartfelt evening included Sunshine Kids testimonial from young Kendall Ramos and from the event emcee Melissa Wilson of Fox 26, who shared the story of her son Caleb’s fight with cancer and how he benefited from the programs, including meeting the Astros and Craig Biggio.

Jennifer Wisler, Don Sanders and Laura Moore photo by Daniel Sanders
Sunshine Kids executive director Jennifer Wisler, dinner chairs Don Sanders & Laura Moore the Sunshine Kids 40th anniversary celebration (Photo by Daniel Ortiz)

It was Sunshine Kid Bennett Nester who surprised Biggio by announcing the on-stage line-up for the friendly roast. The guys shared stories about Biggio’s superstitious ways, his favorite band —U2, and humorous tales ranging from the Astrodome to road trips. Conor was asked five words to describe his father. Two of them being “loyal” and “weird.”

PC Seen: Sunshine Kids executive director Jennifer Wisler, Julia Morales and Matt Clark, Sheriff Ed Gonzalez, State Senator Carol Alvarado, Mary and Tony Gracely, Ruth and Nolan Ryan, Aledmys and Dayara Diaz, Monica and Joe Casiano, Vicki Luna, Paula Harris, Susan Sanders, Monica and Joe Casiano, and Vicki Luna.  

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