James Perri has won big in more ways than one.
The Huntsville, N.C., resident, who has survived rare brain tumors twice, just won $15,800 on "Who Wants To Be A Millionaire" Monday, WBTV.com reports. Perri promptly donated the entire amount to Operation Oligo Cure, a nonprofit started by his wife, Nancy, to raise awareness and funds to cure oligodendroglioma, a rare disease affecting just 4 percent of people with primary brain tumors.
Perri, a 40-year-old father of two, gives his wife all the credit:
“She’s really the one who’s impressive in this whole thing,” he told the Charlotte Observer of his wife. “To put this whole thing together is remarkable.”
Perri has been tumor-free since April 2010. His first diagnoses came as a 24-year-old medical student at Robert Wood Johnson Medical School in New Jersey; his second happened when he was 36, the Observer reports.
Patience and persistence proved a winning combination both in battling both tumors -- as well as competing on the game show. After applying a year-and-a-half before, Perri got the call to compete in a live show in November, according to WBTV. Now, those thousands of dollars will fund research for other people diagnosed with oligodendroglioma.
“We thought if we were to stop and get upset, it would just slow our efforts down," Perri told the Charlotte Observer, adding that he's still “feeling great.”
To get involved with Operation Oligo Cure, click here.