Love, Cancer, Gas Money

February is short and cold and pushes the hearts-n-cupids love agenda–probably to keep us all from killing each other, given its dark icy muddiness.

Maybe the only thing worse than February by itself is February when you or someone you love is sick, and frightened. That’s why the bookshop is helping out Mountain Laurel Cancer Coalition. Mt. Laurel runs the Ruben Lovell Memorial Fund–named in honor of a lad whose personal fight ended in leaving us. The fund offers gas cards in the amounts of $35 and $50 to people who have to travel for chemo or diagnosis.

We all know that cancer is a curse visited more on SW VA than most places, and you can argue tobacco, mine runoff, lifestyle and the rest until the chickens leave their roosts in search of safer ones, but the fact remains that we have a LOT of people in the area who don’t have insurance but do have the big C.

They should be able to get the care they need to get better or die with comfort and dignity. Mt. Laurel’s Lovell fund has been seeing to that, quietly and competently, for several years now under the direction of Leigh Ann Bolinskey (nee Kennedy; yeah, she’s a hometown girl). And in 2012, their card requests went from about 200 to 300. And they didn’t have the money. So now they’re roughly $1000 down.

Tales of the Lonesome Pine (and a whole lot of other community members in this region) would like to see that go the other way. So for the month of February, when you buy romances from the LUV SHACK here, we will donate 100% of the purchase price to the Lovell fund. Romances are 50 cents paperback, 3 for $1, value boxes for $5. Hardbacks $2. With any luck, we can empty the shed of its 3,000 or so tomes and fill the coffers of Mt. Laurel Cancer Coalition’s Lovell fund. That’s what we’d all call a win-win.

It’s also what we’d call real love, and maybe a little light dawning in the cold scary dark.


Filed under Big Stone Gap, bookstore management, folklore and ethnography, small town USA, VA

2 responses to “Love, Cancer, Gas Money

  1. Would give the address for the Mount Laurel Cancer Coalition? I would like to make a donation, and I can’t find them online.

    I started your book this morning, and I can’t remember the last time I’ve had such a great read. My husband says he is jealous to see me so excited over a new book – I’ve been reading parts of it out loud to him, so he can be excited, too. I haven’t been to Big Stone in ten years, and he has never been, so I see a road trip in our future.

    Thank you for using your considerable powers for good. It is heartening to countless people, including me.

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