CHASE — There were a lot of smiles all around when two groups of people gathered at D Bar D Ranch near Chase Thursday (Sept. 29), and they looked good.

A good many of those same faces had known tears over the years as they stood by family members or friends battling cancer.

Others in the crowd provide the services that gives hope and help often to total strangers who quickly become friends.

They had every right to be smiling.

A few days before, D Bar D was the scene of a trail ride that saw 130 riders head out not just for the fun of it, but because of the cause.

By the time the totals for ride pledges, a silent auction, “jail time”, bail money, a pig roast, and everything else, there was more than $14,000 to go toward the purchase of an important piece of equipment needed for cancer treatment at Spectrum/Reed City’s center.

When the two groups gathered, there were hugs. Tears. A big facsimile of a check, but even bigger was the knowledge that the goal was far surpassed. Originally they hoped to raise $5,000. $18,000 was needed yet for the important equipment, and they came far closer than even they had dared to hope.

Don Beach and Diane Davis coordinated the event, and two days after it, his mom, Georgia, had surgery to remove a cancerous lip. First reports are very encouraging. She is home and healing.

When Sam Daugherty, president, accepted the check on behalf of the Spectrum Health Foundation, he had high praise for the D Bar D’s group of 23 volunteers on hand to witness the moment. And Beach promised even more in the future. He said he was proud of the people who made it happen, and he pledged that there would be an increase of 20 percent come next year.

That drew applause, and that translated to hope.

On hand for Spectrum in addition to Daugherty were Irene Balowski (Director of Cancer Services), Linda Rubin (Chief Operating Officer), John Archer (Dosimetnist), and Meri Jo Dawson (Social Worker).

The volunteers who helped it all happen included Beach and Davis, Ida DeHaas, Denise Clinton, Darwin Baker, Annette and Rob Creek, B.J. Lehnert, Jessica Kolenda, Deb Chupp, Lawrence Heether, Kathy Schuler, Kathy and Karl Bucholtz, Denise Archer, Autumn Creek, Adam Seavey, Lorie and Byron Pritchard, Al Kearns, Ed Gilmore, and Duane and Monica Gradisher.