A group of childhood friends from Emmetsburg will be walking the parade route this Saturday, March 15, during the annual St. Patrick's Parade. They will be selling coffee and hot chocolate and "Team Coley Bear" bracelets to raise money fo the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society (LLS).
Amber (Faulstick)?Melby and friends are raising funds for LLS. Amber is a candidate for Woman of the Year, honoring Cole McDonough, the son of her lifelong friend Julie (Hand)?McDonough.
"I have been given the opportunity of a lifetime to help the more than one million Americans who are living with blood cancers. Each year The Leukemia & Lymphoma Society, Minnesota Chapter, launches its Man & Woman of the Year fundraising campaign. This year I accepted my nomination to participate in honor of a little boy close to my heart, Cole McDonough," said Amber.
"As one of 13 people competing in the state of Minnesota, my goal is to raise as much money as I can during the ten week campaign, which will go directly to LLS in support of its longstanding mission to find a cure for blood cancers and improve the quality of life of patients and their families," she continued.
Amber and her campaign team are asking for donations and support in the fight against blood cancers.
"Simply send a check made out to the 'The Leukemia & Lymphoma Society' with 'Amber Melby' in the memo and mail to 1024 South Payne, New Ulm, MN 56073 by May 15, 2014, or visit my online fundraising page (www.mwoy.org/pages/mn/MN14/amelby) where you can make a donation. One dollar equals one vote and the winner will be announced at the Blood Drop Ball on May 16, 2014 in Minneapolis."
In her campaign letter, Amber tells young Cole's story: Cole's journey began on Jan. 6, 2013 when he was diagnosed with Acute Lymphoblastic Leukemia. He underwent eight months of intense chemotherapy and is currently in remission. He will continue chemo until May of 2016. Coley Bear loves Star Wars, toy cars, movies, popcorn, playing with his brother and friends and reading books. He and his big brother, Chase, love to pretend to be ninjas and/or Jedis.
Cole McDonough is currently the "Boy of the Year" in Minneapolis, MN. The Boy and Girl of the Year are children battling blood cancers who serve as motivation and inspiration to Man and Woman of the Year candidates in their competition to raise funds and win the titles.
Cole is the son of Julie and Matt McDonough, and his maternal grandparents are John and Ruth Hand of Emmetsburg.
Members of Amber's campaign team include:?Carrie Naig, Nicol Roethler, Stephanie Ellis, Michelle Hong, Tara Seifert, Kim Joyce, Carla Fank, Michelle Hoekstra, Sarah Weidman, Ryan Faulstick, April Hubin and Amanda Groebner.
Look for members of Team Coley Bear along the parade route.
"Like many of you, I have witnessed first-hand the debilitating effects that cancer can have on those who suffer from it and on the friends and family who care for and nurture their loved ones," said Amber.
Facts : Every four minutes someone is diagnosed with a blood cancer
Every 10 minutes someone loses their battle
Leukemia is the leading cause of cancer death of children and young adults under the age of 20