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Bath hardware store organizes benefit for cancer patient

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Bath hardware store organizes benefit for cancer patient

BATH — Cheryl Frye says her battle with breast cancer has been a special journey, bolstered by the love and support of those around her.

It's those sentiments that have gone into a benefit being held for the Bowdoinham woman on Saturday, March 8, at 5:30 p.m. Organized by Rogers Ace Hardware, where Frye works as a supervisor, the event at the Bath Senior Center, 42 Floral St., is billed as "a benefit for our beloved Cheryl."

The show includes live entertainment, a spaghetti dinner, and live and silent auctions. All proceeds go toward Frye's medical expenses, and a donation of at least $8 is requested.

Frye, 56, who has worked at the store almost five years, was diagnosed with breast cancer last September. She said she has an aggressive form of cancer, and has undergone chemotherapy and two surgeries, and will receive radiation treatment, too.

But Frye, who said she will continue on medications for years to rid herself of the cancer, maintains a bright attitude. She called her experience "a really beautiful journey," noting that "a lot of things come to light, and you see so much goodness in people."

Working at Rogers has contributed greatly to her outlook.

"People have been so helpful and supportive, and overwhelmingly generous, that it's really opened my eyes to a different way to look at life," said Frye, who is married and has three children and four grandchildren. "Sometimes you look at your story in life and wonder, 'why did I quit such a great job at L.L. Bean five years ago? ... Then why did I come here?' I definitely can see it now."

Jayne Ryan, a senior supervisor at Rogers, called Frye a valuable employee.

"To face a threatening illness you need a few things, including strength, spirit and friends," she said on Tuesday. "And Cheryl has all three."

While she has insurance, a significant out-of-pocket payment increase this year has forced Frye to seek financial help, although she was hesitant to accept assistance.

Frye said she will appreciate whatever funds she gets from the benefit.

"I don't want to say there's a dollar amount in mind, because it doesn't matter to me," she explained. "It's just the generosity that lightens my heart, and that whatever we get, we will figure everything else out."

Those who cannot make the benefit, but would like to help, can reach Rogers Ace Hardware at 443-6089.

Alex Lear can be reached at 781-3661 ext. 113 or alear@theforecaster.net. Follow him on Twitter: @learics.