Nearly four months ago, 16-year-old Louisa resident Trey Pugh found out he had stage two testicular cancer and would face a lengthy fight with chemotherapy.
Last week, the local chapter of the P. Buckley Moss Society decided to join Pugh on the battlefield. The charitable organization’s Louisa-based group, called Pat’s Blue Goose, will hold events throughout the entire year in hopes of raising more than $8,000 for the family.
“We want to go the whole year and raise as much as we can,” Blue Goose President Shirley Collins said.
The bills have piled up for the family, as the Pugh family has had to make dozens of 45-minute trips to and from Regional Medical Center in Spotsylvania for Pugh to receive treatment. Despite living in a crowded mobile home on New Bridge Road, the family of four was all smiles when they received the news.
“It feels awesome,” said Kelly Pugh, Trey’s mother. “There are things we’ve needed to do that we’ve had to leave behind so we could pay for his treatment. It’s great to see that someone is there to help us.”
The mission to raise money for the family is headed by Collins, and is an annual tradition for the organization. In her nine years as president, Collins and the group’s 19 members have raised more than $50,000 for needy children.
The Blue Goose chapter raises money to help one particular candidate every year. Collins said that the group maintains a certain level of faith that the right person will reveal themselves. So, when she opened up a copy of The Central Virginian and saw the ongoing series delving into the triumphs and trials of Pugh throughout his treatments, it was something resembling divine intervention.
“We never go out and look for the children, they just seem to come to us,” Collins said. “I saw his article and I said, ‘Oh my goodness, maybe this is the child we should work for this year.’”
The group is as efficient as they are generous, wasting little time in setting up a variety of events throughout the upcoming year. The chapter will be holding a Bingo night event on Saturday, May 24 at the Gordonsville Fire House, with miscellaneous items being auctioned throughout the night as well. Other events, such as yard sales, spaghetti dinners and church picnics will also be utilized as fundraisers throughout the year.
Collins herself is like a mobile fundraiser. She carries tickets to the Bingo night and various other events at all times. She also visits local businesses looking for donations and calls local event organizers in hopes that they will let her sell more tickets at their own festivities.
To read the entire story, see the March 6 edition of The Central Virginian.