COTTAGE HILLS - A local family has organized a benefit for Shane Cole, a 50-year-old man with stage four cancer.

“Cancer’s not cheap,” said Suzie Cole, Shane’s mother. “It’s expensive. [The extra money] would mean Shane could sleep. That’s the important thing, his health and his comfort.”

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The benefit is scheduled for 4–11 p.m. on May 25, 2024, at the Cottage Hills VFW. The money will go toward Shane’s treatments and serve as extra funds for his family, including his wife and two daughters.

Shane has stage four cancer in his brain, lungs, kidney, liver and pancreas. Suzie explained that it was “so totally out of the blue” when Shane went to the doctor after a persistent migraine. He has since been undergoing radiation and immunotherapy, but the cost of treatment and transportation back and forth to St. Louis is adding up.

Additionally, Shane worked as a mechanic and welder, and he was the primary breadwinner for his family of four. His wife, Melissa, is the full-time caretaker of her father in their home. They have two daughters, Katelyn and Makaylah. The money raised at the benefit will ease some of their expenses.

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“They need all the help they can get,” Suzie said. “He deserves it. He’s my son. Obviously, I’m prejudiced.”

Tickets for the benefit cost $10 for adults and $5 for kids ages 5–12; kids under 5 are free. In addition to the meal, they will have basket raffles, a silent raffle, a cash bar, a 50/50 drawing, a DJ and “all the things that you would normally find at a benefit,” Suzie said.

While the diagnosis has been “devastating,” Suzie speaks of her son with a smile. She noted that he works hard and loves the people and animals in his life. There’s a picture of Shane bottle-feeding a kitten. Another photo shows him hugging his daughters. Suzie hopes people will come out for the benefit and help her son sleep better at night knowing that his family is taken care of.

“His love for people and animals, oh my gosh, it’s amazing. He’s always been that way,” she said. “I have three sons. He’s my middle one, and he’s the one who would always be home by curfew. I don’t know what else I could really say.”

You can donate to Shane’s GoFundMe or email for more information about the benefit on May 25.

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