Florida coach Amanda Butler's shoes will aid Kay Yow cancer fund
Florida coach Amanda Butler will join coaches around the nation - including Oklahoma coach Sherri Coale, Miami’s Kate Meier, Kentucky’s Matthew Mitchell, LSU’s Van Chancellor and North Carolina’s Sylvia Hatchell - in wearing hand-painted Nike Shoes as part of "Think Pink" week to raise awareness of breast cancer and money for the Kay Yow Cancer Fund.
Butler will wear her pink shoes during today's home game against Mississippi State, then afterwards the shoes will be auctioned off and the proceeds donated to the Kay Yow Cancer Fund - in honor of the late North Carolina State coach who died in 2009 of breast cancer.
The shoes have been hand-painted by Gainesville resident and Florida grad Tina Mullen, director of the arts and medicine program at Shands Hospital.
One of Yow’s most famous quotes – “When life kicks you let it kick you forward” – is hand-painted on each pair of shoes Mullen designs.
Butler, who considered Yow both a friend and mentor, was one of the last coaches to have a team compete against Yow's team. The Gators won at N.C. State on Dec. 7, 2008, then a few days later, Yow took her final leave of absence. First diagnosed with breast cancer in 1987, Yow died on Jan. 24, 2009.
“I’m hoping a bunch of people come out and support, not just to raise awareness but to raise money,’’ Butler said. “She was always so good to me. I was just little peon coach at UNC-Charlotte and she never treated me that way.’’