Poker Run fundraiser to benefit local resident

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By Vickie Fleming

To meet Donnie Seigler with his smile and lively personality you would never know that he is fighting the battle of his life. He has lived with Acid Reflux Disease for the past 8 years and the doctors have been treating it by medication. Donnie also went every six months for an Esophagogastroduodenoscopy (EGD) a test to examine the lining of the esophagus. All of Donnie’s tests had been negative until this past December when he found out that he had Esophageal Cancer and it was at Stage 4.

He went two weeks later for CAT Scan and found out that the cancer had spread into his lymph nodes, stomach and liver.

Donnie was born at the Pelzer Hospital and he graduated from Woodmont High School. In fact, he is 5th generation to live and work in the Pelzer area. Donnie moved back to Seigler Road when he was 25 years old to raise his own family. For the past 25 years, he worked at BASF The Chemical Company up until he was diagnosed with Stage 4 Esophageal Cancer.

When his friends found out about the high cost of Donnie’s medical visits, testing, and medication they immediately began planning a fundraiser to help with offsetting his monthly costs. This Saturday, April 7th a Poker Run will begin at the Twisted Spoke which is located at 7603 Hwy. 76 in Pendleton.

Everyone is welcome to participate with this fundraiser.

The first bike or vehicle will leave at 11 a.m. and return to the Twisted Spoke by 4 p.m. when the bands, Double Shot and Southern Exposure will begin the evening’s fundraiser. The entrance fee for the Poker Run is $15.00 per person or $25.00 for couples and it also includes a BBQ plate. Prizes for Best Hand are $300.00, 2nd best is $150.00 and 3rd best hand will receive $60.

Along with the Poker Run, they will be auctioning off a 2005 Harley Sportster, an autographed Clemson Football, a Thomas Kinkaid Painting, golf packages with overnight stays and a new Remington 870 Shotgun and lots of gift certificates from dinners to mechanical services. Those who don’t ride in the Poker Run can come out and get a BBQ Plate for $5.00 and participate in the auctions and raffle.

The family and friends of Donnie hope to see everyone out to help with raising the funds to offset the costs of medical care for him and allow Donnie to focus on his healing. While Donnie is grateful for the event, his goal is “to bring awareness to Acid Reflux Disease and let everyone know they should take it very serious because it can lead to Esophageal Cancer.”

If you or someone you know has Acid Reflux Disease and are not under medical care, you should seek treatment immediately before it turns to cancer.