Jaycees#039; benefit to help Burkett

Published 12:00 am Saturday, March 6, 2004

The Greenville Jaycees will sponsor a Saint Patrick’s Day Benefit Bash at 8 p.m. on Saturday, March 13 at the Butler County Fairgrounds.

All proceeds from the event will benefit Reuben Burkett Jr. who is fighting against cancer.

According to Kristie Burkett, his sister, he was diagnosed four years ago with cancer.

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&uot;We thought then he had whipped it,&uot; she said.

&uot;It came back.

He spent nine weeks at UAB recently fighting this, but we should be rounding out the chemo soon.&uot;

Donating their musical talents that night will be Renny McNaughton and Lakota, Eleven and DJ Boogie.

&uot;We want to thank Lakota and Eleven for participating in the benefit,&uot; Burkett said. They are all so special to us for doing this and we are so happy they were in a position and place to do it.&uot;

Tickets are $10 at the gate and advance tickets can be purchased at the Front Street Pub. For those wanting beverages during the dance, it is a BYOB event.

Jaycees President Rhett Idland said his organization is happy to take part in this worthy event.

&uot;When Kristie Burkett approached me and asked if our club would be interested in helping with this benefit, I took it to our membership,&uot; he said.

&uot;Several club members went to school with Reuben and have known his family all their lives.

"We decided to do what we could to show our support for the Burkett family during this time.&uot;

The Jaycees will work the gate and then help clean up after the event is over.

Burkett said the event would not have been possible had it not been for the help of the Greenville Jaycees.

&uot;So often, you hear about their great work with foster children, but they do take part in so many other community events to help others whenever they can,&uot; she said.

Burkett said her family also wanted to thank Melba Parker and Whitney Bank for taking care of setting up an account for her brother.

Donations can be made at any Whitney branch.

Burkett said the evening would have many special parts including a silent auction.

In that auction will be a new set of tires, gift certificates for dinner and much more and many other special items.

There are also special T-shirts for the occasion that can be purchased for $15.

To show his support for the Burkett family, Front Street Pub owner Eric Fennell, will close for the night.

Fennell is also a member of the Jaycees.

&uot;The Front Street Pub will be closed Saturday night so that the community can come out and support this,&uot; Burkett said.

&uot;We’ve got a lot of friends who have put in and who will put in a lot of time for this. Without everybody’s overwhelming support, we would not be able to do this.

Burkett said her brother would not be able to attend.

&uot;He would so enjoy being there but after this round of chemo, his immune system will too weak for him to be around others,&uot; she said.

&uot;He is so looking forward though to being able to get out and do things again.

He looks forward to when he can see his friends and thank everyone in person for taking part.&uot;

Gates open at 7 p.m. when the Silent Auction begins.