Vidalia Market to host benefit for cancer patient

Published 12:03 am Friday, June 12, 2015

VIDALIA — It didn’t take long for Vidalia resident Jolene McNemar to receive a wave of support following her diagnosis of breast cancer in January.

A breast cancer benefit fish fry for McNemar, who is an outpatient coordinator at Promise Hospital, will take place from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. today at Vidalia Market.

Promise Hospital staffing coordinator Rasty Parker said although most tickets, which are $8, have been sold, at least 100 plates will be available for purchase Friday.

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That is a testament of the support McNemar has received during the last few months.

“I’m very excited and blessed to be surrounded by such amazing people,” McNemar said. “If it wasn’t for people like Rasty, it would have been very difficult to deal with. Coming here, working with Rasty and everyone else, has helped out as a whole.”

Parker said she has known McNemar for years, forming a deep relationship.

“She’s like a daughter to me,” Parker said.

Although Parker knows the news of being diagnosed with breast cancer might have devastated McNemar, she remained in good spirits.

“(McNemar) is very strong and upbeat,” Parker said. “She’s very positive and I think her faith has helped with that.”

After being diagnosed with breast cancer, McNemar went into surgery to have a mastectomy. She is currently preparing for hysterectomy surgery.

“It’s been up and down,” McNemar said. “I stay pretty positive through it all. I’m dealing with it — it’s life — and I have to go on and take it day by day.”

McNemar’s aunt, Betty Murray, sold more than 100 tickets alone for the fundraiser.

“If people attend, not only would it be beneficial to her, it would show the support from fellow citizens,” McNemar said.

Half of the profit gained from ticket sales would go toward McNemar’s medical expenses, while the other half would go to Buie Magnolia Fundraising, which will provide five pieces of catfish, coleslaw, french fries and hushpuppies.

Those who purchased tickets can pick up their catfish plates at Vidalia Market.