Great support shown at fundraiser for two Rockton and Roscoe families

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April Doubleday was surrounded by her loving family at the fundraiser.

Two local families received great support during a fundraiser festival on Saturday, May 7 at Roscoe United Methodist Church. At the heart of the day's action were 40 year old Joey Beard and 17 year old April Doubleday. Thanks to the generosity of all who donated or gave in any way, over $50,000 was raised. All proceeds will be used to help both families pay medical bills and expenses.

Rockton resident Joey Beard has a rare gene mutation called Stat3 GOF which has caused him many health problems throughout his life. It has caused kidney failure and liver disease. Beard has been on dialysis since 2019. His wife Hayley does his dialysis at home four nights a week. He was accepted as a transplant candidate at University of Pittsburg Medical Center. He is in need of a liver, kidney and bone marrow transplant. His wife has been approved to be his liver donor. Once they find a kidney/bone marrow donor, then the transplants can be scheduled. The Beards have two young daughters, Elsie and Molly, who consider him the best daddy ever. Joey is fighting this fight because he wants to be able to see his kids grow up.

Joey Beard, his wife Hayley, and their daughters Elsie and Molly were greeted by supportive family and friends.

Hononegah High School student and Roscoe resident April Doubleday is living each day with Ehlers-Danlos Syndrome (EDS), a genetic connective tissue disorder. Because of it, April's body has faulty collagen, a tissue that essentially holds the body together like glue. There are 13 types of EDS. April has hypermobile EDS (hEDS), the most common type. Other types can be rarer or even fatal.

Besides joint hypermobility, symptoms of hEDS include loose, unstable joints that dislocate easily, either partially or completely; joint pain or clicking joints; extreme tiredness/fatigue; skin that bruises easily; digestive problems; dizziness and increased heart rate after standing up; even prolapse of the heart's mitral valve or pelvic organs.

Both Joey and April are members of Roscoe United Methodist Church. Their pastor Paul Myers wanted to find a way to help both families and he came up with the idea to have a fundraiser. After hearing of Pastor Paul's idea, the Beard and Doubleday's church family quickly stepped up and instantly formed a committee. Each person used all their God-given talents to make the event come together.

The day of the event, bright sunshine filled the sky. The weather was perfect as nice crowds came out in support of both families. The grounds of Roscoe United Methodist Church were loaded with opportunities for everyone to have fun for a great cause.

Families and other supporters took horse-drawn wagon rides. Little ones had fun in bounce houses, or had their faces painted by Sara Ludwig, Preschool Director of Village Nursery. Extra fun came in the form of a duck pond and trying out vocal skills at karaoke.

Sara Ludwig, Preschool Director at Village Nursery painted Mollie Craig's face.

More than 100 baskets filled a tent, ready to be bid on in a silent auction. Generous businesses or individuals gave the baskets. Gift cards were also offered.

O.D Holley, owner of Advanced Auction and Appraisal of Durand, served as auctioneer of the live auction. Spectacular items to be auctioned included a package complete with rare tickets to a Packers game, a two night stay at Jefferson St. Inn, in Wausau, and a weekend beach house package. Tickets to WWE-Fab Four, a Vince Gill concert, Chicago Bears preseason tickets, and Daniel Tiger's Neighborhood basket with a ticket 4 pack were also up for bids.

Firefighters with Harlem-Roscoe Fire Protection were on hand along with fire trucks and equipment displays.

More fun came in the form of a photo booth. Hawaiian bun ham sandwiches, with sides of chips, applesauce and cookies were available to purchase for lunch.

Anyone who missed the event or would like to show loving support can donate online at https://www.roscoeumc.org/.  Click on the Give link to find information on the May 7 event which will show details on how to pay with a credit card. Checks can also be made payable to RUMC with "May 7" in the memo line.

This event turned out to be very successful as the church and community came together to pull off a beautiful day. 

Families took in the sights on horse drawn wagon rides during a fundraiser at Roscoe United Methodist Church on Saturday, May 7.
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