Our Opinion: LAC a model of caring, success

Published 6:06 pm Saturday, January 25, 2014

We’d like to congratulate the organizers behind the Lyle Area Cancer Auction — again.

It never gets old seeing the community of Lyle and core LAC volunteers come together to raise money to fight cancer, bringing in $186,500 this year. The auction has become a model of consistency, raising more then $100,000 every year since 2004, and the auction will surpass $2 million raised with some of the events held this year ahead of the 36th auction in 2015.

The Herald not only got a rare inside look at the auction when reporter Jason Schoonover volunteered at the auction Jan. 17, but we also got to hear from Gary Harrison, one of the original founders of the auction 35 years ago and someone who’s still volunteering today. Harrison described the auction’s formation as a group of friends coming up with a spur of the moment idea. Harrison remembered the early years when volunteers served as auctioneers — before local auctioneers donated their time — selling empty coat hangers for more than $100 when they ran out of items to sell.

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To us, the greatest strength of the auction has been a steady, persistent approach. While it’s no surprise that the auction topped $170,000 for the third straight year, people often forget the auction hit $12,000 only once between 1980 and 1997.

We point that out not to diminish the earnings of the auction’s first few decades, but to note that leaders have never been hung up on goals. Every year when we contact organizers, they take an “every-little-bit-helps” approach to the auction. Even after raising $200,000 last year, LAC organizers were thrilled with raising $186,500 this year. They were never caught up with topping $200,000.

Last weekend’s Lyle Area Cancer Auction may not have topped $200,000 for the second time, but the event continued a great tradition.

We’ll like to thank everyone involved with LAC and wish them luck in the future.