‘It’s my whole life’: Skylar Thompson hosts fundraiser in memory of mother, grandfather

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Skylar Thompson looks downfield against Kansas on November 6, 2021. (Archive photo by Kendall Spencer | Collegian Media Group)

Kansas State senior quarterback Skylar Thompson and his family partnered with Goolsby’s this weekend to host their first annual fundraising event, “A Night With Skylar Thompson.”

Fans and donors bought tickets for dinner, drinks, live music and entertainment and participated in a silent auction. All proceeds benefit the “Thompson Family Cancer Research Fund,” which supports the Kansas State Johnson Cancer Research Center. Thompson’s mother and grandfather both died of cancer when Thompson was young.

“It’s my whole life,” Thompson said. “Just being able to use the experiences and stuff that I’ve gone through, like losing my mom and just being able to honor her, which I try to do every day, but to be able to just take one day out and dedicate it to her and my grandfather means a whole lot.”

Thompson has a big week ahead of him with the 2022 NFL Draft starting Thursday, but he still felt like this event sits high on his priority list.

“It’s a busy time in my life, but being able to put this all together with Jamie from my agency, I pitched her the idea that this is something that I really wanted to do, and she just took the idea and ran with it,” Thompson said. “She did such an amazing job, and I’m blessed to have the team around me. It was a high priority for me to host this, but we just didn’t know when we would. So hosting it right now in the midst of everything and it kind of takes the pressure off of some things.”

There was a big turnout for the event, from family to former teammates and fans. Former Wildcat Wyatt Hubert made the ride over from Cincinnati, and current Wildcats Will Howard, Eli Huggins and Ross Elder sat at a table with friendly faces.

With so many people, Skylar’s dad, Brad, said he feels “blessed.”

“We always talk about K-State being family-oriented, and this is the perfect case of that,” Brad Thompson said. “We’ve had tremendous support across the board. A lot of the support came from the people that couldn’t even make it to the event — we probably raised just as much money, if not more, from the people that couldn’t get here, as we will from the people that are here and it’s just a blessing to receive support like that for such a great cause.”

The family hopes to do this event annually for several reasons, some being for support of the fund, and some being to be able to come home and catch up with friends and family.

“At first, I wasn’t really thinking about doing this more than once, but the more that I thought about it, I thought that this would be a really cool thing to do once a year to try and get my family and former teammates to come back to Manhattan for a weekend,” Skylar Thompson said. “We’ll keep exploring what that is gonna look like in the future, but the fund will definitely be a yearly thing, and I’m hoping that this will be something that I can carry for the rest of my life.”

Just 24-years-old, Skylar Thompson has a dedicated cause that he wants to work and fight for — something that his father is very proud of.

“For my son to be able to realize that this is the future, and want to support that, to me, it just makes me feel like I did my job right,” Brad Thompson said. “I made this comment before, and I’ll make it again — as a dad, the sports come easy, but for him [Skylar] to come out and grind this event out and also to give presentations last night, was a very proud moment for me as a dad.”

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