HUNTLEY – Patty Azarela's children were prepared for impending bad news when they saw tumors forming along their mom's neck in early April.
Now after a month that brought Azarela a cancer diagnosis, a shaved head and chemotherapy, Azarela's children are prepared to do whatever it takes to raise $50,000 for their single mother, who recently had to quit her job at Parkside Pub in Huntley after nearly 25 years.
"We were prepared because the tumors were visible in her neck," said daughter Nicole Holmes. "It was a huge shock. My mom is pretty young. It took us aback a little bit."
At 49 years old, Patty Azarela is waiting to receive health insurance while she starts treatment on stage four cancer that has spread throughout her lymph nodes. Azarela's living expenses are also mounting.
The circumstances caused Holmes and her brother, Daniel, to take to the Internet. They started an online campaign to help cover their mom's medical and living expenses. Since it began almost a month ago, they've secured nearly $8,600 in donations.
With their sights set on a $50,000 donation goal, they have organized a day-long benefit on Saturday for Azarela at her longtime workplace. The fundraiser at Parkside Pub, 11721 E. Main St., Huntley, features live music, auctions, raffles, games and food from 2 to 10 p.m.
Holmes said that other area organization are also planning fundraisers for Azarela, who raised her family in Huntley. With enough community support, Holmes believes they can reach their goal as their mom continues her battle with cancer.
"My mom touched a lot of people's lives in the last 25 years," Holmes said. "The [Saturday] event will be a good time and for a good cause."
If you go:
What: Cancer benefit for Patty Azarela, a longtime Huntley resident recently diagnosed with stage four cancer that has spread throughout her lymph nodes
Where: The benefit lasts from 2 to 10 p.m., Saturday, at Parkside Pub, 11721 E. Main St., Huntley
To donate or volunteer, contact Nicole Holmes at (847) 971-2140 or visit gofundme.com/pattyazarela