Behind the mint juleps and bright hats of the fourth annual Sill-TerHar Motors Kentucky Derby Party, is a family that through tragedy found the beauty of joining forces for a cause that hits close to home.
Jack and Penny TerHar stood alongside their daughter, Jennelle, and son-in-law, PT, as their granddaughter was diagnosed with DIPG, (diffuse intrinsic pontine glioma) — a terminal and aggressive brain cancer.
“As you can imagine it was a surreal experience, but the doctors we worked with were amazing and guided us through the most horrible experience any parent can face,” said PT. “As we were going through this journey, we discovered that our doctor’s research was being funded by a bridge grant from The Morgan Adams Foundation.”
The TerHars were first connected with Morgan Adams when Sill-TerHar Motors sponsored and presented cars for the foundation’s Concours d’Elegance which features exotic cars, motorcycles, and airplanes.
Now, Jack and his wife Penny hold a Kentucky Derby-themed fundraiser in memory of their granddaughter, Mia Ertl.
“She loved horses, so a Derby-themed party only made sense,” said Jack.
The Derby Party is Jack’s way of paying tribute to Mia’s love for horses and riding. All of the proceeds benefit The Morgan Adams Foundation. This year, the event raised over $90,000.
The event took place at Sill-TerHar’s showrooms at 125 Alter Street, Broomfield, CO, on Saturday, May 5th.
“The party included a wonderful dinner, cigar maker and live music. The highlight of the day is an event where people bid on the Derby horses,” said Jack. “The bids are donations to the Morgan Adams Foundation. It’s more fun than the traditional paddle raising.”
The party is a natural fit for the community Jack and PT have built with their customers and friends. It combines attending a glamorous event with donating to a good cause.