CHARLOTTE, N.C. (QUEEN CITY NEWS) — Golfers enjoyed a beautiful day at Ballantyne Country Club while protecting themselves from the sun. 

The 16th annual Save Your Skin Golf Classic helped raise nearly $100,000 for the Carolinas Melanoma and Immunotherapy Fund supporting Atrium Health Levine Cancer on Monday.

“Skin cancer is 100% preventable,” Dr. David Hodgkins said.

Hodgkins, who lost his daughter Jessica to the deadly skin cancer, has made his mission to bring awareness through the Purple Promise Foundation to End Melanoma

Dr. David Hodgkins talks to event participants on Monday

“You definitely have to have a dermatologist, and you have to have an annual check-up. Don’t go outside without a hat on, and don’t go outside without sunscreen; wear long sleeves as much as you can,” Hodgkins said.

Dr. Martin Kreshon lost his mother to Melanoma. The doctor and his family are proud presenting sponsors for the golf event. 

“People don’t understand that moles can turn malignant,” Kreshon said. “Everybody thinks, ‘Oh, it’s just a skin cancer.’” 

But it’s a different story when it comes to Melanoma.

“Not when it’s Melanoma,” he added. “I have had Melanoma, diagnosed a year ago, and have a very big scar on my back. I had it removed. It’s a surgical disease. There are no good chemotherapy treatments for it. Radiation doesn’t seem to touch it.”

Kreshon says there is now hope for Melanoma sufferers that’s spread just beyond being on the skin: Immunotherapy. 

“But, you never want to get there; this is really all about prevention, prevention of sun damage to your skin, especially if you’re fair skin.”

Kreshon says they are seeing more and more young people from tanning beds that cause skin cancer. 

For information on Atrium Health’s Melanoma Care at Levine Cancer, visit the center’s website here.