Adventist Health Sonora held its 17th Annual Joie de Vie Gala at Ironstone Vineyards in Murphys on Sunday evening. The event raised a record-breaking $260,000 for the Cancer Patient Support Fund. The fund assists local cancer patients with a variety of expenses such as transportation to treatments, medical copays and uncovered prescriptions, as well as utility bills and household needs. “Through the generosity of donors in our community, we are able to help cancer patients during an extremely stressful time in their lives,” says CEO Andrew Jahn.
The gala also included the presentation of the annual Irving Symons Award to Don and Charlotte Frazier for long-time community service. The couple moved to Sonora in 1985 and owned Hillcrest Manor, an 111-bed licensed facility for elder care, for 25 years. They have been involved with several Adventist Health Sonora boards, Sierra Senior Providers, the Tuolumne County Chamber of Commerce, and other service organizations.
More than 400 people attended this year’s “Roaring Twenties” themed gala. The evening included dinner, keynote speaker and former San Francisco 49er Junior Bryant, music, plus live and silent auctions, as well as paddle-raiser donations. Guests were able to bid on almost 200 items, which ranged from exotic vacation packages to paintings and photographs by local artists. One item, an original printer’s proof of an early Star Wars promotional poster, donated by Foothill Printing and Graphics owner Jim Klann, fetched $5,000. The auctions alone raised nearly $95,000.
Kara Turpen, manager of philanthropy for Adventist Health Sonora, says the auctions exceeded her expectations. “The generosity of our donors and this community is overwhelming. This kind of support for our friends and neighbors with cancer is both gratifying and humbling.”