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Spaghetti fundraiser aids ailing student

Event Saturday at north Forsyth shop

POSTED: October 5, 2012 12:31 a.m.
 

A north Forsyth businessman has organized a fundraiser for a high school student undergoing cancer treatments.

Kirk McConnell, owner of the Donut Connection and Coal Mountain Builders, will hold a spaghetti plate benefit from 3 to 9 p.m. Saturday at the doughnut shop, 3225 Keith Bridge Road.

All $7 per plate sales and donations go to the family of Adrian Babykin, a 17-year-old senior at North Forsyth High.

Babykin was diagnosed in August 2010 with Stage 4 Hodgkin’s Lymphoma. She went through five rounds of chemotherapy, and seemed to be cancer free.

However, some of her symptoms returned this August and she was again diagnosed with recurrent Hodgkin’s Lymphoma.

She went through more chemo, as well as a steam cell transplant followed by six weeks of radiation. She’s still recovering from these treatments, said her mother, Melissa Kirsche.

“She’s on hospital homebound right now because her recovery has been hard and it’s hard to sit at school all day,” said Kirsche, noting that her daughter is also taking some classes through the school system’s Academy at Night program in order to have enough credits to graduate with her class.

“She’s very excited to come out [to the benefit] because she gets to see people she hasn’t seen for a while. I’m sure there’ll be students from her class there that she’ll get to see, so she’s very excited.”

This will be the fourth spaghetti plate fundraiser McConnell has held for children in the north Forsyth community with cancer.

“I lost my father when I was 22 to cancer and I’ve got two kids that are real healthy and have never really had any medical issues at all,” McConnell said. “I just look at these other kids … and I just feel like it’s something I need to do.”

McConnell said the past events have raised between $6,000 and $9,000 each time, and used about 50 gallons of sauce handmade by one of his Donut Connection employees.

“The last one [held in 2010], we served between 600 and 700 plates,” he said. “I charge $7 a plate, so if you do the math, you’d think I’m only going to raise between $4,000 and $5,000, but it seems like one out of three people donates more.

“A lot of people give more than what I charge, so it’s kind of cool how the community comes together and helps other people.”

Kirsche said the event means a lot to her entire family.

“We’re excited to get out of the house and see everyone and do something,” she said. “It’s going to be great.

“It means so much for the community to come out and support Adrian and help us out.”

 

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