The clock is ticking for a Southern Illinois native trying to make a dream come true for a child fighting for his life.
Sam Annable, an account executive for the Peoria Chiefs with family ties to Goreville, has been working since the summer to send a Peoria boy who lost a limb in his fight with cancer to Super Bowl XLVII.
Annable began a series of trades in July beginning with a pair of blue dice in the hope that eventually he could trade up to tickets for the big game. The project was inspired by One Red Paperclip, in which a man started with a paperclip and continually traded up until he had a house.
Having landed a dream job of sorts, Annable said he wanted to do something to benefit the community.
Once Annable started a blog for the project, his dice were quickly traded for an Alex Rodriguez rookie card, valued at about $100. The baseball card was flipped for a Wilson baseball glove that was made for New York Mets first baseman Ike Davis. The glove was not game-worn, but was one of a handful made for Davis that he never used. The glove was then traded for an iPad, the iPad for an ATV and the ATV for a Honda CB200T motorcycle, which has been on the trading block since shortly after Christmas.
A recipient was selected shortly before the holidays with the help of Children’s Hospital of Illinois in Peoria. The child is not aware of Annable’s Two Blue Dice project in case it is unsuccessful, but the parents know about the trip and the chance it might not happen.
“I’ve kind of stalled as we’ve gotten closer,” said Annable.
Annable was contacted by NFL Films who expressed an interest in documenting the child going to the game, but with the Super Bowl about two weeks away Annable said he does not have a backup plan to get the tickets for the boy and his father. He’s received donations that have been auctioned off to help cover travel and hotel expenses. But sitting on a motorcycle valued between $500 and $1,000, and the cost of tickets around $2,000 a pop — Annable has some big trades to negotiate.
Although Annable wants nothing more than to get the tickets for the child this year, he knew the project’s success was risky, which is why he named it Two Blue Dice.
“I wanted to do it for an ill child, someone that takes a chance everyday when they’re living,” he said. “Everyday is a new day and they’re happy to be there, the next day they couldn’t be because of their illness. Dice represent the risk and chance.”