Car show aids Union Hos­pi­tal can­cer pa­tients

Cecil Whig - - LOCAL - By CARL HAMIL­TON ca­hamil­ton@ce­cil­whig.com

ELKTON — The fifth an­nual “Cruzin’ for a Cause” car show, which fea­tured than 200 vin­tage and rare au­to­mo­biles in the North­east Plaza park­ing lot in May, raised nearly $16,000 to ben­e­fit the Union Hos­pi­tal Can­cer Pro­gram, ac­cord­ing to chief or­ga­nizer Missy Reynolds.

Dur­ing a brief cer­e­mony at Union Hos­pi­tal on Fri­day, a check for $15,863 gen­er­ated by the lat­est an­nual car show was pre­sented to hos­pi­tal of­fi­cials on be­half of that can­cer pro­gram.

In 2012, Reynolds, of North East, founded the car show in honor of her late fa­ther, Robert C. Reynolds, an au­to­mo­bile en­thu­si­ast who died from can­cer on June 16, 2012, at age 75. Her fa­ther had fre­quently dis­played his gleam­ing white 1960 Chevy Im­pala at lo­cal and re­gional car shows. Dur­ing the event on May 27, that Im­pala graced the car show park­ing lot in his mem­ory.

Missy Reynolds plans the char­ity car show event ev­ery year with her mother, Mary Ann Reynolds, also of North East. Robert and Mary Ann had been mar­ried 52 years when he died from can­cer.

Dur­ing the pa­tri­arch’s bat­tle with can­cer, the Reynolds fam­ily re­al­ized that can­cer pa­tients — even though they have med­i­cal in­sur­ance — still could ex­pe­ri­ence a fi­nan­cial strain. That dis­cov­ery was the cat­a­lyst for the Cruzin’ for a Cause car show that memo­ri­al­izes Robert Reynolds and helps Union Hos­pi­tal can­cer pa­tients who are strug­gling to pay their med­i­cal bills.

“Through his can­cer treat­ment, we learned that, you may have in­sur­ance, but those co-pays and de­ductibles add up real fast. There was a gap be­tween what the med­i­cal in­sur­ance cov­ered and what he had to pay out of pocket,” Reynolds ex­plained. “My dad was known for be­ing a com­mu­nity-minded man. He saw a need and said some­thing needs to be done.”

By that time, how­ever, his bat­tle with can­cer over­shad­owed ev­ery­thing and lim­ited him. Af­ter her fa­ther died, Reynolds de­cided to take ac­tion and cre­ated the an­nual car show that gen­er­ates funds to help Union Hos­pi­tal can­cer pa­tients han­dle their co-pays and de­ductibles.

Pro­ceeds through the Cruisin’ for a Cause car show are gen­er­ated in many ways, start­ing with own­ers of vin­tage and rare au­to­mo­bile pay­ing an un­spec­i­fied reg­is­tra­tion fee to dis­play their ve­hi­cles.

“There is no set amount for the reg­is­tra­tion fee; they pay how they feel led, like a do­na­tion,” Reynolds said, not­ing that, by and large, en­trants have been quite char­i­ta­ble over the years.

A sec­ond way, raf­fle tick­ets are sold for chances to win gift bas­kets con­tain­ing a va­ri­ety of goods and ser­vices — all of which are do­nated by nu­mer­ous lo­cal busi­nesses, she said, adding, “We have tremen­dous sup­port from our busi­ness com­mu­nity.”

Dur­ing the car show in May, mark­ing the third way money is raised, tick­ets were sold for a 50/50 raf­fle, Reynolds noted.

Lastly, peo­ple sim­ply do­nate money to the cause.

Checks in mem­ory of Robert C. Reynolds still can be sent to the Union Hos­pi­tal Can­cer Foun­da­tion, 147 W. High St., Elkton, 21921.

PHOTO COUR­TESY OF UNION HOS­PI­TAL FOUN­DA­TION

Union Hos­pi­tal CEO Rich Szumel (sec­ond from left) ac­cepts a $15,863 check from North East res­i­dents Mary Ann Reynolds (left); her daugh­ter, Missy Reynolds, and Missy’s son, Jeremy, dur­ing a brief cer­e­mony on Fri­day at the hos­pi­tal.

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