Friends, family and fellow Pagosans will have an opportunity Oct. 9 to help Chuck and Jackie McGuire by attending a benefit dinner and silent auction — the proceeds of which will help Jackie continue her battle against Mesothelioma, a form of cancer often caused by exposure to asbestos.
The Pagosa Springs Kiwanis Club and the Knights of Columbus are key sponsors of the event, which begins at 5 p.m. in the Parish Hall on Lewis Street.
Tickets cost $15 for adults and $5 for children 10 years old and under. Higher Grounds Coffee, Exit Realty, the Pagosa Springs Area Chamber of Commerce and Wild Spirit Gallery are selling tickets for the event.
Chuck and Jackie moved to Pagosa Springs from Arizona in June 2003 and the couple quickly put down roots. Jackie, an outdoor and fly fishing enthusiast, became a founding member of the Ladies in Wading flyfishing club, served as president of the local Kiwanis Club and on the board of the Archuleta County Education Center.
Professionally, Sherry Waner, president of First Southwest Bank, recruited Jackie out of Arizona to work as a commercial loan assistant and within two years, Waner promoted Jackie to commercial lender and assistant vice president. During her tenure with the bank, Jackie became intimately involved with many local business owners as they sought to obtain capital for their endeavors.
Unfortunately, and according to local Realtor Kim Moore, it was while working with Jackie on a loan for a local restaurant that Jackie began to show signs of respiratory illness. That was March of 2008, and by April, doctors diagnosed Jackie with Mesothelioma.
Since then, Chuck said Jackie has undergone two surgeries — including the removal of her right lung in June 2008 —seven rounds of chemotherapy and 28 massive doses of radiation. However, and despite the aggressive treatment regimen, a scan in Aug. 2009 revealed an inoperable tumor on Jackie’s heart.
She is now at home under hospice care.
Contributions for the silent auction can be brought to Moore’s office at Exit Realty. Exit Realty is located at 40 County Road 600 (Piedra Road) — formerly The Corner Store.
Moore said all contributions would be greatly appreciated, particularly service-related packages such as snow removal or landscaping.
In addition, and for those unable to attend the benefit dinner, the Kiwanis Club has opened an account at First Southwest Bank where donations can be deposited.
Those wishing to donate can do so at either bank branch and tellers will have the necessary account information.
First Southwest Bank is located at 643 San Juan Street in downtown Pagosa Springs, and at 249 Navajo Trail Drive, about a quarter mile west of North Pagosa Boulevard.