For months, Mark Myers nursed the pumpkin patch in the empty lot next to his Saratoga Springs house.I found out today that the pumpkin sale was only one day - last Saturday. But the reporter of the story told me that there is a fund set up at Mountain America Credit Union. You can go to any branch and ask to contribute to the Jameson Jones fund.
It's been a tradition in the neighborhood for years now; when the pumpkins are plump and orange, kids come running to pick their favorite ones to take home. Back when it all started, next-door neighbor Cindy Jones helped plant the first seeds.
"This is something I just do for fun, just for a hobby," Myers said.
But this year, Myers tended to his pumpkins with a specific purpose. In February, he and the rest of the tight-knit neighborhood reeled from news that the Joneses' youngest child, a 3-year-old boy with Down syndrome named Jameson, was diagnosed with leukemia.
Myers and others around the block hatched a plan: The pumpkin sale this year would be a fundraiser to help the family. The neighbors sought donations for the sale and eventually secured some extra pumpkins, corn stalks and straw bales. The last step was telling the Joneses the sale was for them.
"From the moment they decided to plant the seeds, they knew they'd be donating this money to Jameson," neighbor Heather Anderson said. "Everybody in the community pitched in on this, and they had no idea the whole time."
Myers said he'll never forget the day he asked Jameson's father, Troy, to meet him in his driveway.
"He said, 'There's probably other people who could use it,'" he said. "I said, 'No, not as much as you guys could use it. You guys have been through hell and back.'"
Consistent rain didn't stop people from coming out for the sale Saturday afternoon. As friends and new faces alike paced the rows of pumpkins looking for the perfect one, Jameson got a wheelbarrow ride down the street from Myers.
Wednesday, October 08, 2008
Jameson Jones Fund
As reported at the Daily Herald, and repeated here,