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Springville Journal letter to the editor: Thanks for community support

Itís hard to believe a year has passed, since my wife Patti was called to heaven, after a courageous battle with cancer and one day before our 21st wedding anniversary.

So much has happened; I donít know where to start. Itís been a year of firsts, for us, and youíve been there, in more ways than I can explain.

I would like to take this opportunity to thank you all, for the love and support you have shown, not just to me and my sons, but the whole Willibey and Rehrauer families. Thereís not a night, in my dreams, when I donít see the light of her eyes and her even brighter smile. A light so bright, my heart was captured the moment we met, just two teenagers, so long ago.

The shattered lives of our once-perfect family lay everywhere. What would we do now?

Enter family, friends and neighbors, to help pick up the pieces, with offers to help in any way they could, or just sit and listen. A faith, hope and love and strong enough to pick us up off the ground, to get us back on track.

The system Iím talking about is our community. A place that I am so proud to call my home. Where you can grow up, fall in love and raise a family.

Last year, in the week following Pattiís passing, the community gathered, once again, for the American Cancer Society Relay for Life, to honor the survivors and remember the loved one not so fortunate. This remarkable event has been a part of my family for years and ironically, is where the healing would begin.

Patti was our first team leader, for the East Concord Fire Department and now Lori Ploetz has taken it to the next level, with a team named ďPattiís Daisies.Ē

Lori has put a lot of time and effort, over the last years, for this and many other causes. I mention her, because she is exactly the type of person this community is full of and, for that, I feel most fortunate.

In closing, I would like to invite all of you to join us for Relay for Life on June 8 at the Springville High School, home of the Griffins, at noon Ė midnight. Join a team or start one, either way, come and experience the true meaning of community.

Jim, Brandon and Justin Willibey

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