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‘Dreams for Denise’ to benefit East Longmeadow native battling cancer


Aug. 13, 2014

G. Michael Dobbs
news@thereminder.com

SPRINGFIELD – Friends and family will gather at the Melha Shriners Temple to help raise funds for Denise Garvey, an East Longmeadow native who is fighting cancer.

“Dreams for Denise” will take place at 6:30 p.m. on Aug. 15 at the temple at 133 Longhill St. For a $20 donation, participants will be able to enjoy barbecued chicken, hamburgers, hot dogs, corns on the cob, a baked potato station, desserts, entertainment and a raffle.

Joanne Garvey, Denise’s mother, explained to Reminder Publications that her daughter is s single working mother who was diagnosed with lobular cancer, a rare form of breast cancer. She lives in Unionville, Connecticut, with her 12 year-old son.

She said Denise was diagnosed in March after she went to the doctor because she “felt weird.” She has undergone a double mastectomy and lymph node removal and will be undergoing chemotherapy, radiation and additional surgeries in the future.

“She’s a fighter and we’re praying for the best,” Garvey said.  “She had a wonderful job, but we can’t work anymore.”

The fundraiser’s goal is to help Denise with her everyday expenses.

Garvey explained her late husband Jim was a Shriner and the Melha Shrine stepped up to help her daughter by donating the use of the hall as well as other aspects of the fundraiser. The bartenders, she added, are not taking any pay to work the event and are donating their tips to the effort as well.

Garvey said that her niece Kimberly Mulcahy has been “a huge help” in the campaign to support Denise. 

There is also an online campaign to at www.gofundme.com that is also raising funds for Denise.

Garvey has been impressed with the outpouring of support in behalf of her daughter.

“There is so much kindness in the world,” she said.

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