The Roc Solid Foundation truly began nearly twenty years ago when founder Eric Newman was a child, much the same age as those the organization now helps, and was diagnosed with liver cancer. To the surprise of his doctors, Eric beat the odds and his cancer and has been in remission ever since. Sadly, two of his cousins were also diagnosed with various forms of cancer at young ages, and they tragically lost their battles, leaving an impression on Eric and driving his desire to “do something.”
At the age of 25, Eric assembled a group of friends and organized a fundraiser for the Children’s Hospital of The King’s Daughters (CHKD) in Norfolk, Va. – the pediatric hospital that saved his life. The first ever “Night for the Fight” was a great success, and it inspired him to continue down the path of helping kids with cancer.
When founder Eric Newman was first diagnosed with pediatric cancer, his dad gave him a small Garfield stuffed animal embroidered with his childhood nickname “E-rock.” The toy had to be sanitized by the hospital staff before they would allow Eric to have it, and during the process, the “K” fell off.
Eric kept the stuffed animal, but it wasn’t until about 22 years later that it played a role in the naming of his new-found passion. “E-roc” inspired the “Roc” in Roc Solid, describing the tough fight these children face and the strength embody.