Gary Camburn benefit 10.22.08

Written by David Green.

When a person has drawn blood from most everyone in town, he’s bound to have a lot of friends and acquaintances.

Add to that a few years of time serving on the Morenci Board of Education, some summers devoted to coaching Little League and women’s softball, and membership in the Morenci Sportsman’s Club. He even has his name on the Morenci Area High School track and field records board, dating back to 1968.garycamburn.jpg

With all of that history, it’s no doubt that Gary Camburn and his wife, Suzanne, are feeling overwhelmed by the flood of support shown for Gary after the announcement of a benefit dinner and auction in his honor.

“It’s very humbling,” Suzanne said. “I’ve never seen such an outpouring of support and offers of assistance. It’s just amazing.”

Gary worked as a laboratory technician  in Morenci for 38 years before transferring to Herrick Medical Center. Metastatic colon cancer has forced Gary out of the working world since April. He and Suzanne have been without any income since June as they continue to seek benefits from a long-term disability policy—so far without any success.

Gary was first diagnosed with colon cancer in 2003 and underwent chemotherapy. His condition appeared to be going well until he went to the doctor with what he thought was bronchitis. That visit led to his diagnosis earlier this year.

Suzanne said they’ve bought raffle tickets and helped with benefit efforts many times over the years, never thinking that some day they might become the beneficiaries. They’re most appreciative of the help, but it’s not a comfortable turn of events.

“We had no idea it was going to turn into something of this magnitude,” she said. “It’s one of the nice things about living in a small community.”

The benefit dinner and auction is planned for Gary from 5 to 8 p.m. Saturday at the Morenci Sportsman’s Club. A taco dinner will be served and guests will be invited to bid for dozens of items in a silent auction. Auction donations have poured in so heavily that some things will be given away as door prizes.

Auction items include certificates for services such as hair care and car care, hand-made craft items, a portable DVD player, binoculars, Red Wing tickets, shotguns and newspaper advertising. There’s also a football signed by Morenci’s 1995 team that played in the Silverdome.

Activities for children include pony rides and pumpkin decorating.

Members of Morenci’s Class of ’68 are encouraged to attend, hopefully to visit with their classmate.

“Our intention is to at least make an appearance at the benefit,” Suzanne said, but that will depend on how Gary is feeling as he continues with chemotherapy.

(The photo shows Gary Camburn from the early 1990s era) 

 

  • Front.train
    WRECKAGE—Morenci Fire Department member Taylor Schisler walks past the smoking wreckage of a semi-truck tractor on the north side of the Norfolk and Southern Railroad tracks on Ranger Highway. The truck trailer was on the south side of the tracks
  • Front.sculpta
    SCULPTORS—Morenci third grade students Emersyn Thompson (left) and Marissa Lawrence turn spaghetti sticks into mini sculptures Friday during a class visit to Stair District Library. All Morenci Elementary School classes recently visited the library to experience the creative construction toys purchased through the “Sculptamania!” project, funded by a Disney Curiosity Creates grant. The grant is administered by the Association for Library Services to Children, a division of the American Library Association.
  • Funcolor
    LEONIE LEAHY was one of three local hair stylists who volunteered time Friday at the Morenci PTO Fun Night. Her customer, Aubrey Sandusky, looks up at her mother while her hair takes on a perfect match to her outfit. Leahy said she had a great time at the event—nothing but happy clients.
  • Shadow.salon
    LEARNING THE ROPES—Kristy Castillo (left), co-owner of Mane Street Salon, works with Kendal Kuhn as Sierra Orner takes a phone call. The two Morenci Area High School juniors spent Friday at the salon as part of a job shadowing experience.
  • KayseInField
    IN THE FIELD—2004 Morenci graduate Kayse Onweller works in a test plot of wheat in Texas. She’s part of Bayer CropScience’s North American wheat breeding program based in Nebraska, where she completed post-graduate work in plant breeding and genetics.
  • Front.winner
    REFEREE Camden Miller raises the hand of Morenci Jr. Dawgs wrestler Ryder Ryan as his opponent leaves the mat in disappointment. Morenci’s youth wrestling program served as host for a tournament Saturday morning to raise money for the club. Additional photos are on the back page.
  • Front.bank.2
    SHERWOOD STATE Bank opened its Fayette office at a grand opening Friday morning, drawing a large crowd to view the renovated building. Above, Burt Blue talks to teller Cindy Funk, while his wife, Jackie, looks around the new office. The Blues missed the opening and took a quick tour on Tuesday. Few traces remain of the former grocery store and theater, however, part of the original brick wall still shows in the hallway leading to the back of the building. The drive-through window should be ready for customers later in the month.
  • Front.make.three
    FROM THE LEFT, Landon Wilkins, Ryan White and Logan Blaker try out their artistic skills Saturday afternoon at the Morenci PTO’s first Date to Create event. More than 50 people showed up to create decorated planks of wood to hang from rope. The event served as a fund-raiser for miscellaneous PTO projects. Additional photos are on the back of this week’s Observer.

Weekly newspaper serving SE Michigan and NW Ohio - State Line Observer ©2006-2016