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Letter to the Editor: Walker family feels 'blessed'

We, the children of Bill and Jean Walker, are overwhelmed with the support from the Perham and Ottertail area. Thank you. We are blessed because of you.

We had dozens of donations from area businesses and residents to the Bill Walker Cancer Benefit, held Oct. 27 in Perham. Bill has been diagnosed with Stage 4 Malignant Melanoma, and times will be tough as he continues to battle this disease.

Bill and Jean moved to Ottertail in 1994 and Bill and his son, Ben, work in the area. There are those who donated because they know Bill, Jean and Ben - either through the Perham Home where Jean worked, because Dad and Ben have done work for them, or through Northwoods Assembly of God. Few know us older kids, Tim, Rochelle and Janelle. We wish we knew you all by name, to thank you for your love and the blessings you have shown.

There also were plenty of other donors who might not know our family, but simply stepped up because it is the right thing to do. In our modern, disconnected world, sometimes it is hard to remember to reach out to others. We get caught up in our own problems. But reaching out to others is a hallmark of a small town. They are also the actions that create a community.

Bill's oldest daughter, my sister Rochelle, called me as she drove to Perham on Saturday morning, tearing up. She was crying not from sadness, but from the overwhelming sense of gratitude and blessing from you, the community. Writing this now, I tear up because I wish I could go to every one of you and give you a hug for the comfort you have given to us.

Special thanks go to the Northwoods Assembly of God church family, Dirk and Bobbie Currier, Marie Schaefer Dahring and the dozens of individual donors I don't have the space to mention. We couldn't have done the event without your help.

Several people have asked how they can continue to help. Checks can be made to: Bill Walker Cancer Benefit, 555 40th St. S. #332, Fargo, ND 58103. Donations may also be dropped off at any Bremer Bank location.

Again, thank you for being a community that cares for its residents.

Janelle Walker

Elgin, IL