Festival to benefit three

Published 10:38 pm Tuesday, October 25, 2011

Debbie Boyd is one of eight siblings, and her family means the world to her.

After seeing two of her siblings struggle with debilitating diseases, Boyd decided she had to do something to help them.

In recent years, she said, she has watched her brother, David Latimer, fight lymphoma and her sister, Rita Greiner, battle multiple sclerosis.

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“It’s heartbreaking that both my brother and sister have young children,” Boyd said. “It takes a lot away from their families with them being sick. It’s a lot for them to go through.”

To try to help them out, Boyd, who lives in Smithfield, has organized a music festival to raise funds to help her brother and sister, as well as another member of her community who is fighting cancer.

The Fall Music Festival will take place at noon Saturday at Travis’s Auto Repair in Carrollton. Admission is $15 for everyone 13 years and older. Children under 13 get in free.

Several bands, including Southern Tradition and Pachanga, will perform at the festival.

There will also be children’s activities, face painting, food, a bake sale and a silent auction featuring items such as a pressure washer, dinner for two at Smithfield Station and various gift baskets.

Guests should bring their own lawn chairs or other seating to the event.

While she was planning the festival, Boyd said, she realized she wanted to extend the fundraiser beyond her own family and add another beneficiary.

“Our community has done so much for my family, so I picked someone else who has cancer to benefit from the event,” Boyd said.

Boyd said Connie Chapman, who is battling breast cancer, is recovering from a recent surgery and has a young son.

All of the money raised from admission, the bake sale and the silent auction will be donated to the three individuals.

Coordinating the festival has been a lot of work, Boyd said, but it has been a rewarding experience.

“It hasn’t been easy, but it’s been worth it,” she said.

Boyd said her family and friends have been a huge help, and the community also has stepped up.

Bands have volunteered to play at the event — some are even reuniting for the occasion — and local businesses have donated food and items for the auction.

“It’s very heartwarming,” Boyd said. “People that we don’t even know have come forward. We can’t even thank them enough they have treated us like their family.”

She said she hopes the community comes out to enjoy the festival.

“It’s a good cause, and they will have a really good time,” she said.

For more information, contact Boyd at 651-8352.