Concert to benefit teen battling cancer

Thursday, August 7, 2008

A pair of local bands will host a benefit concert for the family of Crystal Patrick, a 2007 graduate of Cassville High School who has been battling brain cancer for the past six years.

Walk-Ins Welcome and Lost in Honesty will perform from 7 to 9 p.m. at the First Christian Church in Cassville. All proceeds from the event will help the Patrick family pay for expenses associated with Crystal's treatment.

Walk-Ins Welcome includes Cassville High School graduates Ryan Schlichtman and Pate Shumaker and Cassville High School senior Vinee McCracken. The benefit will mark the group's farewell concert.

Lost in Honesty is another Cassville-based band that includes Cassville High School graduates Clint Reed, Kyle Mills, Will Dorrell and Jeremiah Harris and Cassville High School junior Justin Mills.

Both bands are popular among young audiences but adults will also enjoy their music.

All area residents are invited to attend the benefit. Admission is $5 per person with all the money going to the Patrick family. Concessions will also be available during the concert.

Crystal, now 19, was first diagnosed with medulblastoma cancer at the age of 13, and since that time has undergone three surgeries to remove tumors in her brain and battled through countless rounds of chemotherapy and radiation treatment.

In February of this year, Crystal successfully completed a stem cell transplant that was supposed to leave her cancer free. In June, another MRI was performed to check the status of her cancer, and Crystal's oncologists at St. Louis Children's Hospital discovered a new tumor on the base of the cerebellum.

The doctors have now labeled Crystal's cancer as "chemo-resistant" and have yet to decide on the next course of treatment for Crystal.

In order to care for Crystal, Kim was forced to quit working back in October of 2007. Crystal's treatment has required frequent trips to St. Louis and the stem cell transplant put Crystal in the hospital for three months. Kim's husband and Crystal's dad, Ron, is a self-employed brick mason whose work has been negatively affected by inclement weather.

As a result of these circumstances, the Patricks now find themselves struggling to meet financial obligations and buy gas to make frequent medical-related trips to St. Louis.

Anyone who would like to support the Patrick family during their time of need can attend Friday night's concert or drop off contributions at Security Bank in Cassville.

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