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Waynesboro Eagles raise $2,000 to help woman fight cancer

March 17, 2003|by RICHARD BELISLE

waynesboro@herald-mail.com

WAYNESBORO, Pa. - Jill Sipes Sellers, a single mother of three girls who was told by doctors that the cancer ravaging her body soon would kill her, received more money Saturday night for her fight to stay alive.

The Waynesboro Fraternal Order of Eagles raised $2,000 at a benefit to help Sellers pay for the expensive alternative treatments she has been undergoing in Tijuana, Mexico, since December.

Sellers' oldest daughter, Laken, 8, raised more than $1,000 for her mother's treatments by making candy canes from bits of plastic, beads and pipe cleaners, which she sold for 50 cents each last December.

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Sellers, 32, has raised nearly $90,000 from fundraisers sponsored by area organizations, businesses and individual donations.

She said Saturday that the treatments she's undergoing at the Oasis of Hope cancer clinic in Tijuana will cost about $300,000 over the five years, including travel and lodging.

She has to travel there every three months, she said. Between visits, she has regular CAT scans at Washington County Hospital in Hagerstown. The results are faxed to her doctors in Mexico, she said.

"Some people have donated airline tickets to me from the frequent flier miles," she said.

Sellers spent three weeks in Mexico around Christmas for her first round of treatments. She said she goes back in April.

Her father, Richard Lynch, said that a few weeks ago the tumors in her body swelled.

"I called my doctor (in Mexico) and he said it was normal for them to swell first with the treatments then shrink," she said,

The Mexican treatments were not recommended by Sellers' physicians at Johns Hopkins and Mercy hospitals in Baltimore. She was told her condition was hopeless because so many tumors have invaded her body.

She knows of no name for her cancer, she said.

She learned of the Mexican clinic and decided to try it. She said others have been cured by physicians there.

The treatments include injections of Laetrile and other medications plus blood cleansing procedures that kill the cancer cells, she said.

She also follows a diet of organically grown foods, she said.

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