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Lyle Area Cancer celebrates 41st auction and milestone

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Lyle Cancer Auction

LYLE, Minn. (KTTC) - While the weather may have cancelled many events across our region, one annual tradition carried on today in Lyle.

"It's like a family reunion here once a year with the gathering of people that are all fighting," said Gary Ziegler, one of the chairs of Lyle Area Cancer.

Since its start, the Lyle Area Cancer Auction has never been cancelled. Ziegler remembers it snowing over a foot a few years ago.

"We knew last night and today wasn't going to challenge the spirit of our bidders and the vast support network we have through Lyle Area Cancer," Ziegler said. "True to form, they came out in droves."

At the Lyle Cancer Auction, there was a variety of items for people to bid on, including Ziegler's wife Cindy's famous raspberry creme pie. One sold for $300.

"It just touches everyone and we all have our own story and our own reason for helping," said Ziegler.

"I mean I had really good friends, classmates, family members. Everybody's been touched by it. We're going to find the cure," said Lyle Area Cancer chair Larry Ricke.

The cancer auction has grown over the years.

"It's word of mouth. The excitement gets out there," Ricke said. "For instance, people go on vacation and they say 'Hey, we've got this little auction.'"

The auction was only the start of the area's cancer fundraising efforts.

"If we're going to make some real money, we need to have another event," said Ziegler, remembering what he was told years ago.

Soon, others in the area were coming up with their own ways to help.

"The pool, the crop, the quilting, the cans. I can go on and on," said Ricke, naming off events. "The barbecue. It just goes on and on and on. Squeeze out cancer."

Friday night, Lyle Area Cancer celebrated a milestone, $3 million raised.

"It's just heartwarming as all can be," said Ziegler. "Renews one's faith in mankind."

Just as heartwarming -- the proof of their efforts paying off.

"We keep gaining survivors every year. There's real progress being made," said Ziegler.

All of Lyle Area Cancer thanks the volunteers who help make the events possible.

After the year's total is determined from all the events, the funds are given to the Eagles Cancer Telethon to make further progress in the fight against cancer.

Alex Tejada

Alex Tejada

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