Daily News photo/ALY GIBSON From left, Judy Root and Patty Grahl, aunt and cousin of Jenny Richcreek Parish, managed the donations that filtered in Saturday for Parish’s medical expenses after surgery to remove a tumor.

Archived Story

Community supports local cancer survivor

Published 7:23pm Sunday, July 22, 2012

Saturday marked 43 days that Jenny Richcreek Parish has been in the hospital in recovery.

The day also served as an evening of support and well wishes at the Dowagiac Fraternal Order of the Eagles, where community members, family and friends gathered to help raise funds for Parish’s medical expenses.

Parish, who is  still recovering at the University of Michigan Hospital, underwent major surgery to remove a tumor and organs that had been enveloped with cancer. When initial treatment and the first attempt at surgery failed, Parish and her family feared the worst. But through what Parish’s sister, Bobbie Jo Hartline, is calling a miracle, a second chance for surgery came through and now, Parish is recovering and, according to her father ,Don Richcreek, cancer-free.

“It’s tears of joy and appreciation,” Patty Grahl, Parish’s cousin, said Saturday.

Grahl and Parish’s aunt, Judy Root, manned the table at the door of 101 E. Railroad St., in Dowagiac, better known as the Eagle’s Club. Within the first hour of the fundraiser, which served spaghetti dinners and had a 50/50 and prize raffle, more than 40 dinners had been sold.

Richcreek said his daughter has hoped to be home for the fundraiser, but because recovery is still ongoing, she stayed in Ann Arbor.

“She’s gaining; it’s been a rough time and serious surgery, but she’s progressing,” Richcreek said. “They want to make sure she’s 100 percent before releasing her and sending her home.”

Richcreek said the outpouring of support for not just family and friends, but those in the community, has touched his and Parish’s hearts.

“It’s overwhelming and unbelievable,” Richcreek said. “There’s a lot of good people in the world.”

Donors can make a contribution at any Huntington Bank under The Parish Fund. All funds will aid with medical expenses.

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