Anyone who has read a newspaper in the last year knows about the plight of uninsured and underinsured Americans.
Jack Treinen's family has learned first-hand about the cost of being underinsured.
The 16-year-old, who lives on the border of La Plata and Montezuma counties, was diagnosed with embryonic germ-cell
carcinoma June 9. Since then, he has had five surgeries and four five-day rounds of chemotherapy - most of it at
Children's Hospital in Denver. His insurance maxed out at $10,000. That sounds like some decent money, but just the
CT scan he has to have after every operation and round of chemo runs $6,000.
His daily meds aren't cheap either. Jack takes three pills a day, and one of them costs $300 per pill. None of that
includes the travel to Denver and in-patient care because his condition needs to be monitored.
On Sunday, the community came together to raise money for Jack. The bands Motivator and The Boycotts filled the Abbey
Theatre with live music as more than 50 people came out for the cause, despite the snowy, icy roads. The event was
organized by Matt Piper of Natures Medicine and Cindi Sheridan.
Jack is far more than a cancer patient. A Montezuma-Cortez High School cross country and track and field athlete, his
goal is to break the school's 800-meter record. He also enjoys snowboarding and playing soccer.
Fighting cancer should be all Jack and his family have to think about - the struggle with bills adds a lot of
Stay tuned. Friends are planning future fundraisers and Jack Treinen T-shirts are on the way.
If you want to help the Treinens with Jack's medical bills, a fund has been set up at Wells Fargo Bank. Contributions
may be dropped off or mailed to the Jack Treinen Benefit Fund, Wells Fargo Bank, 200 W. College Drive, Durango, CO
It's beginning to look a lot like birthdays for Eloise Talbert, Patrick Leach, Henry Freiemuth, PatriciaStrumpf, Angie Raulston, Angela Mainwaring, Gary Ulrich, Mary Ellen Black, Corynna
Roberts, TylerDugan, Emilee Glenn, Don
Bruning, Michelle Jungerberg, Charles Reid, Kathryn
For 127 years, the Reading Club of Durango has held a holiday luncheon to celebrate the holiday season.
This year was no exception. About 15 women braved the icy roads to gather at Christina's Grill and Bar to socialize
and enjoy a delicious meal Thursday.
The restaurant had done all the decorating for us, with multiple Christmas trees, wreaths and lights.
Guests wore holiday duds and colors, with red winning the most popular color award. Giselle Pansze
had told her husband she wanted to look as elf-like as possible and wore a long, soft red sweater that definitely
gave it a shot.
The Program Committee has the assignment to organize the event, and chairwoman Laurel Vogl and
member Pat Roach did all the heavy lifting.
In addition to sharing holiday plans, the discussion, of course, included recommendations of books as well as
memories of members who have died recently, including Kay Haukeness, Lorraine
Gardenswartz, Janet Watson and Morley Ballantine.
Many people are getting into the spirit of helping our friends and neighbors in these tough economic times. Owners
Lesand Penny Layman and their staff at the Upper East Side Deli in Grandview and
the Upper East Side Liquor at Elmore's Corner held a fundraiser for the Durango Food Bank that ran through
Thanksgiving. That seems appropriate for a business that feeds people.
They matched every contribution dollar for dollar, which really adds up. On Dec. 7, they were delighted to present a
check for $3,200 to the food bank. Executive Director Sarah Smith tells me the money couldn't have
come at a better time. Just as is happening at Manna Soup Kitchen, the need for food for families and individuals is
up significantly this year.
If part of your Christmas philanthropy includes feeding the less fortunate, make your check to the Durango Food Bank, P.O. Box 156, Durango, CO 81302.
Love and snow are in the air for the anniversaries of Williamand Annette Cooper, Danieland StacyWebb, Kipand Laura
Stranskyand Frankand Linda Tikalsky.
More than 20 years ago, Durango had a chapter of Women in Communications Inc., which included female journalists, publishers and public-relations professionals.
While the chapter is no more, some of the members still gather occasionally to discuss issues, challenges and life
stories. (Interestingly, we have gone from worrying about how to be paid a living wage in Durango to wondering if
Botox is for us.)
On Tuesday, Patti Zink, Deborah Uroda, Jane Gerstenberger, Ann Bond and yours truly gathered at the Red Snapper for lunch. Joanne Spina, the
assistant manager of La Plata County, Julie Schultz, the publisher of Durango Magazine and
other members of our stalwart contingent couldn't make it.
Morley Ballantine, the editor-in-chief of The Durango Herald and a former WICI member who
died in October, was remembered. Talk ranged from old PR challenges and community stories to what's been in the news
lately. Just like everyone else, we wanted the back story on the Purgatory at Durango Mountain Resort season-pass
kerfuffle, the infamous chicken at Durango City Council and what may happen at Snowdown.
By the way, the take of the group on the chicken's identity is that we suspect City Councilor Michael
Rendon may have inspired a tall Fort Lewis College student to take on the role, ordering the chicken suit
online to avoid any tattletaling in town.
Just a thought.
A scrivener should never have so much hubris when writing that she (in this case) doesn't look up a word even if her
vocabulary is pretty good. In that vein, I owe Don Mapel an apology.
In my story on A Traditional Family Christmas, the Durango Choral Society's annual holiday concert, which ran Dec. 9, I described him as the erstwhile head of Coca-Cola Bottling Co. of Durango. I thought that meant he had been the
president, well, forever.
His wife, Sandra, however, is a wordsmith herself, and she took the time to check the Funk and
Wagnall's. Lo and behold, it means former, not forever. See," she told him, everyone thinks you're retired."
He's still sitting in the CEO's chair, and I owed him this vocabulary clarification.
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