Newton County 4-H’er Raise Thousands for Friend with Cancer

KENTLAND, Ind.   – The Newton County, Indiana Punkin’ Vine Fair auction was pretty special Saturday evening.

4-H members raised nearly $12,000 for their friend, who was recently diagnosed with a form of  Hodgkins Lymphoma.

Ten year old Austin Weiglos (Well - goes) couldn't attend the fair this year because of his diagnosis, which came earlier this month.

Austin is currently undergoing chemotherapy treatments at Riley Hospital at IU Health in Indianapolis. His friends say they wanted to help him during his recovery, and they chose to do it at the fair Austin loves.

The fundraiser organizer, Amanda Berenda, said "We thought, 'How could 4-Hers help?',"  "The easiest and quickest  way was through the 4-H auction."

In all, 25 4-H members gave a percentage of their auction earnings to a fund that will go towards Austin's recovery. Two members gave 100 percent of their earnings.

The idea of making donations at the auction was the work of the Berenda and Warne families. Berenda said in the end it was a community effort.

Fundraising doesn't stop at the fair. Donations can be made to a fund for Austin's recovery at Community State Bank in Brook. Community members are also selling t-shirts.


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