Everyone knows the Amazing Race has an amazing prize for the pair who makes it around the globe – a cool $1 million.
But viewers may not know what fan favorite Jaymes Vaughan (who partnered with his best friend and fellow Chippendales dancer James Davis on the show) plans to do with the money if he wins.
Shortly before his Amazing Race adventure began, “I found out my father was diagnosed with one of the rarest cancers that there is,” Vaughan, 31, tells PEOPLE. “At this point it’s an incurable cancer, and we’re trying to do everything we can to help him turn it into a curable cancer.”
“The best way to do that is to give him financial support,” he continues, “to be able to say, ‘Hey, here’s a house that’s paid for, here’s your bills paid for, here’s all your medical expenses paid for. You just get better.’ There’s no better way to do that than with a million dollars.”
Adds Davis, 27, “We’re fortunate enough that we are young, we can work, we can work doubles. We can send checks home, we can take care of the folks.”
“We don’t need a million dollars right now, but we have parents who do,” says Vaughan, before pointing out with a laugh, “I had braces twice because my parents knew I wanted to be in the entertainment industry. They didn’t have money for that. Accutane without insurance! I was a mess. Thank you, Mom and Dad.”
The singer and male revue performer has also launched the website FORGETCANCERNOW.com, in an effort to raise money to aid in his father’s recovery. (It also features a moving video in which the best friends share why they’d give the prize money to their families should they win).
“My Dad always told me I could do anything I wanted,” Vaughan writes on the site. “He encouraged me and made me feel like the world was mine to conquer. Now he is battling one of the rarest forms of cancer in the world, and he needs help to conquer it.”