BERLIN – The friends and family of a local middle school student who was recently diagnosed with a brain tumor are pulling businesses and community members together for two benefit fundraisers.
Family friends Brenda Kelly and Scott Bowden and family member Amanda Boston-Davis, with the help of Stephanie Hastings Valdivia and Kim Widgeon, are leading two fundraisers to benefit Kylie Boston, an eighth-grade student at Stephen Decatur Middle School who was diagnosed with a form of brain cancer called medulloblastoma nearly two months ago.
Doctors discovered the tumor after a routine eye exam the day before Boston’s birthday, according to Kelly. Two days later, she underwent an operation at Johns Hopkins Hospital to remove the mass, located on her brain and the brain stem.
“For something to happen to a kid like this is shocking,” Kelly said, adding that Boston was active in Pop Warner cheerleading, Berlin Little League Softball and more.
Boston will continue to receive radiation and chemotherapy treatment at Johns Hopkins for the next nine to 11 months, according to Kelly.
In the meantime, Kelly, Bowden and Boston-Davis will host two fundraisers to help the family with expenses that were accumulated since Boston’s diagnosis.
Boston-Davis, a cousin to the Boston family, will host a paper chase – an equine event likened to a scavenger hunt on horseback – April 1 at the Cedar Lane Farms in Berlin.
“It’s fun,” Boston-Davis said, “for even people that don’t ride.”
Registration for the paper chase will begin at 9 a.m. The event will include raffles, a silent auction, food sales, a DJ, and tack and yard sales.
Money raised from the paper chase, sales and vendor fees will go to the Boston family.
Kelly and her husband will host the second fundraiser, entitled “Karaoke for Kylie” on April 22 at 6 p.m. at the Showell Fire House.
The idea, she said, came from weekly get-togethers between her family and the Boston’s. She added that Kylie enjoyed singing karaoke when they met at Buck’s restaurant on Friday nights.
In addition to a DJ and karaoke, the fundraiser will also have moon bounces, a live and silent auction, face painting, crafts and food.
Businesses, such as Purdue, Home Depot, Pete Richardson Auction Sales and the like, will be providing services for the fundraiser and Stephen Decatur Middle School students will be helping.
She said tickets are available for purchase by contacting firstname.lastname@example.org. The cost is $10 for adults, $5 for kids ages 6-12 and free admission for children ages 5 and younger.
Kelly said monetary donations can also be made at the Farmers Bank of Willards under the Boston Family Benefit. For more information on the events, visit the Karaoke for Kylie Facebook page.