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Cancer patient subject of benefit Saturday

SPRING VALLEY--A 47-year-old man who's been battling cancer for three years will be the subject of a benefit this Saturday from 2 to 6 p.m. at The Coachman in Baldwin.

Rick Boardman has no insurance or benefits. Support for the benefit, which will feature a huge silent auction, beautiful hanging basket sale, chicken dinner and more, will be appreciated by his friends, family and community, who are organizing the event. Monetary donations can be sent to: Rick Boardman Benefit, c/o St. John's Lutheran Church, S520 Church Ave., Spring Valley, WI 54767.

The patient was diagnosed with skin cancer on his face and it spread to his lymph nodes. He had surgery to remove it and went through 18 weeks of chemotherapy and radiation.

Due to the treatments, he was unable to work. The family paid the insurance premiums for as long as they could without his income. Eventually, their cows and anything else they could sell were sold. They finally qualified for Badger Care, which helped, but only temporarily.

Another CT scan showed a spot on Boardman's liver and lung. He went through more chemo.

Just as their finances were exhausted, the well for their water went out. They had no water for six weeks.

The patient struggled to get up enough strength to look for a job. He picked up a temporary job at the cookie factory in River Falls.

Badger Care then dropped his insurance. So again, they had no insurance.

Berg Drywall called him back to work as a laborer. He got up every morning in pain until he went back to the doctor to find out through another CT scan he had a broken rib and clavicle. At that time, doctors found the spot on his lung and liver had returned. Because of his health, he was informed he wouldn't be able to return to work.

Boardman and wife, Theresa, have been married for 25 years, and have two daughters. His spouse has been at his side while working up to three jobs to help with financial obligations. Recently, he learned his father died suddenly.

Benefit organizers believe it's time for the couple to let their friends, family and community help ease some of the financial burden.