June 18 • 12:00 PM
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County residents showed care in Walk-for-Warmth campaign

Dear Editor,

The Human Development Commission's 2008 Walk-for-Warmth campaign is now over and all contributions are in.

The citizens of Lapeer County have demonstrated once again how deeply they care for those less fortunate than themselves. Despite the difficult economic times we are in, despite high unemployment and record home foreclosures, the generosity of Lapeer County residents is overwhelming. This year, the annual HDC Walk-for-Warmth campaign raised a total of $19,452.45—a record amount which beats the previous record for Lapeer County by more than $3,000.

We were pleased to see 93 walkers—led by Judge Nick Holowka—turn out to walk on a cold February morning so that others might keep warm. HDC and the community we serve want to say a big THANK YOU to all who participated in the walk, pledged support to a walker, sponsored the walk or some other major event, or ran any number of small fundraisers with proceeds directed to the Walk-for-Warmth.

Special thanks to the following organizations and individuals for their compassion and support: Platinum Sponsors (contributions of $1000 or more): Wal-Mart Super Center of Lapeer; Women's Council of the Home Builder's Association of Lapeer County; and Lapeer Entertainment Group. Gold Sponsors ($500 or more): UAW Region 1; Lapeer Odd Fellows Lodge #94; Sheet Metal Workers Local Union #7; Lapeer County Democratic Party; Dort Federal Credit Union; DTE Energy; and Blue Flame Propane/Foster Oil, Tom & Jenny Roberts. Silver Sponsors ($300): Lapeer County Bank & Trust; VFW & Ladies Auxiliary #4139; Fraternal Order of Eagles Ladies Auxiliary #2427; Michigan Education Association 10-D PAC; and Rolling Hills Apartments, St. Mary's Catholic Church. Bronze Sponsors ($150): ELGA Credit Union; State Farm Insurance, Keith Byard; Al Parsch Oil & Propane; Durakon Industries; North Branch Thrift Shop; Thumb Management Services; Independent Bank of East Michigan; and Lapeer Area Elks Lodge #2567. Other Sponsors: Nolin, Oesch, Sieting & Macksoud, PC, CPAs; American Legion Post #16; Hamilton's Propane; North Branch Eastern Stars; Molly Maid of Metamora; McAlpine Chiropractic; CMS Oil Company; Olga Long; Lapeer County Parole Office; Donald Lackey; Harmon Oil Company, Thumb Management Services, Mary Ann Vandemark, Barbara Hunter and Citizen's First Bank, Lapeer Branch.

Very special thanks goes to the Lapeer Entertainment Group and to the actors, singers, musicians, production staff and stage crew of the "Lapeer's Tribute to 'Hee-Haw'" production—which contributed more than $1,200 to this year's walk. The Women's Council of the Home Builder's Association also sponsored a Casino Night to benefit the Walk-for-Warmth and we want to thank the Council and all the volunteers from the dealers to the food servers to the cleanup crew that helped make this night a success.

And thank you as well to the many students from area schools who walked in the cold or sponsored an event at their school to help raise funds for the Walk-for-Warmth. Just as importantly, these students helped raise awareness of the needs of many in our community, in their homes, schools and communities.

In these difficult economic times, people from all across Lapeer County—many experiencing their own economic hardships—demonstrated their caring and compassion for those in need. We at HDC are grateful for and humbled by the community's support of this annual campaign, especially this year. Thank you so very much to all who support the annual Walk-for-Warmth.

Debbie Marquardt, HDC Community Liaison
April 30, 2008

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