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February 28, 2013

Scotland County Cancer Fund to Host 9th Annual Benefit

"It's cancer."

Those frightening words are heard for the first time for an average of two dozen Scotland County residents each year. According to the National Cancer Institute (NCI) an average of 24 new cases of cancer are diagnosed each year, a demoralizing high number that still ranks among the state's lowest.

Despite the fact there are an average of more than 30,000 new cancer cases diagnosed each year in Missouri, survival rates are improving. More and more patients are beating ovarian, prostate, colon, breast and lung cancer as well as leukemia.

While improved treatment options and medicine have made for improved health outlooks, the financial wellbeing of patients and their families continue to be hit hard by cancer.

The average cost of treating prostate cancer, one of the most common form of the diseases in males, is estimated at $19,710 in the initial year after diagnosis. The NCI estimates costs of treatment for breast cancer for women is $23,078 for the first year following diagnosis.

Skin cancer comes with the lowest price tag, roughly $5,000 on average while brain cancer generally carries the highest price tag, over $100,000 in the first year.

It's those types of figures that led to the foundation of the Scotland County Cancer Fund.

Now entering its 9th season, the local relief effort continues to raise funds to be used by local cancer patients to pay for treatment and the related costs of dealing with the disease.

The group's main fundraiser, an annual ham and bean dinner and benefit auction, will be held Saturday, March 2nd at the Memphis V.F.W. starting at 6 p.m.

Last year the Scotland County Cancer Fund raised $22,157.55. More than $18,000 was gifted to citizens of Scotland County to help in their fight against cancer.

"In the past nine years we have been able to help 81 people with their fight, some of them more than once," said chairperson Margaret Curry.

In order to qualify for aid from the cancer fund, a cancer patient must have been a resident of Scotland County for at least one year.

"All of our resources are raised from fundraisers such as our annual ham and bean supper and auction, along with memorials and cash donations," said Curry. "All monies stay in Scotland County to help its residents."

The cancer fund is a 501c3 organization, so donations are tax deductible.

At the 2013 benefit auction, the group will be selling chances to win a Traeger Select wood pellet grill, a $975 value, donated by Mayberry Farms.

It's not too late to donate items for the auction. Contact any of the following board members to make a donation: Margaret Curry, Dave Trueblood, Kim Nicoli, Chris Tinkle or Brenda Wilson.

"Please come and support our neighbors with their fight against cancer," Curry said.

For more information contact Curry at 660-465-7275 or 328-6225.


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