Since 2009, Mattapoisett resident William Huggins has been battling colon cancer. He was first diagnosed when he was 37 and was treated successfully. But the cancer came back and metastasized, spreading to his liver, and quickly advancing to Stage IV. There is no Stage V.
As a result, Huggins under went extensive surgery during which 75% of his liver was removed. He is now living back at home with his family and is slowly recovering.
“His surgeries are done, his chemo is done. It’s a relief,” said Huggins’ wife, Michelle.
Fighting cancer is more about having great doctors. The community that surrounds a family dealing with the disease is just as vital for the well-being of those affected.
“Our friends and family, this whole community has really wrapped their arms around us, taken care of us, and helped us in so many ways,” she said.
One of those supporters is BAM Foundation, Inc., which works to raise money to donate to local people like the Huggins family, who received aid from the group.
Cancer is expensive to treat and the peripheral costs are numerous.
“You have to pay for gas, you have to pay the bills, child care, co-pays. It all adds up really fast,” she said.
BAM was founded by Alycia Halle, a breast cancer survivor and family friend of the Huggins clan. One hundred percent of the proceeds raised by BAM go to South Coast families.
So as a gesture of thanks, the Huggins family has helped organize the upcoming Freezin’ For A Reason polar plunge on January 1, 2013.
“We felt it was our responsibly to pay it forward to other people who have reached out to embrace our family and helped so much,” said Huggins.
The plunge, to which many local businesses have donated goods or services, will serve to raise money for BAM so that another South Coast family may feel some financial relief.
“We think her organization is great. There are a lot of people out there locally who are dealing with the same stuff.”
Huggins said they aren’t requiring people to donate a specific amount, but will have a contribution jar at the plunge. They have worked with many local businesses, which are donating food, drinks, and t-shirts. She said she expects about 300 people to attend.
“The turn-out is going to be astronomical. It’s a great way to start off the new year.”
For more information on the Freezin’ For A Reason polar plunge, visit the BAM Foundation, Inc. Facebook page.
By Eric Tripoli