BUFFALO — The public is being invited to come out and enjoy a “BBQ Social” this Saturday and help the family of a young girl undergoing surgery this week to remove a brain tumor.
Ruthie Dean is the daughter of Jeff and Courtney Dean and an 8th grade student at Sims Middle School. For four days last week, Ruthie had a headache and when she went to school last Friday she vomited. Ruthie suffers from blood disorders and her parents were advised to take her to the emergency room so she could receive fluids. The physician at the emergency room had Ruthie undergo a CT scan which revealed there was a tumor the size of a golf ball in the upper left quadrant of her brain. The tumor and the pressure it is putting on Ruthie’s brain is what has been causing the headache and her vomiting.
After the tumor was detected, Ruthie was transported to Greenville Memorial Hospital and placed in the Pediatric Intermediate Medical Unit. Once there Ruthie began receiving medication every six hours to alleviate the inflammation in her brain. The following day she and her family met with a neurosurgeon and she subsequently underwent a two-hour MRI in order to give the physicians treating her a better idea of what was going on inside her brain.
This Friday (Sept. 22), Ruthie will undergo surgery to remove the tumor from her brain.
Since learning of Ruthie’s condition, the community has rallied around her and her family with messages of encouragement and, even more importantly, prayers. It has also resulted in efforts to help Ruthie and her family with the medical expenses they are incurring from her treatment.
One those efforts will take place this Saturday (Sept. 23) from 5-7 p.m. when the Putman Baptist Church Men’s Sunday School Class will host a BBQ Social at Putman Baptist Church, 3692 Buffalo-West Springs Highway, Buffalo. All funds raised at the social will go for Ruthie’s medical expenses.
The Miracle League of Union County has been helping to publicize the social by distributing fliers inviting the League’s players, family, fans, volunteers, and sponsors to attend the event along with members of the general public. The flier states that Ruthie and her parents help the League announce and photograph its games. It further states that Miracle League players will eat at no charge at the social while everyone else is welcome to eat there for $6 each.
MLUC Director Amy Austin said that the BBQ Social was originally planned as a “fun social event for the Miracle League players. But when this came up about Ruthie, they decided to prepare extra barbecue to sell. They’ll prepare and sell until they run out.”
Austin said “the Miracle League is always grateful to people in the community who plan these things. We’re grateful to Ruthie and her family for helping announce and photograph our games. Updates about Ruthie can be found on the Miracle League Facebook page.”
In addition to Saturday’s BBQ Social, the Union County High School Junior Civitan Club and the Union Civitan Club will hold a “Drive Thru Stew for Ru” on Saturday, Oct. 14. The clubs will be selling chicken stew with the proceeds going to help pay Ruthie’s medical bills.
This Friday, students and faculty at Sims Middle School, Union County High School, and other schools will be wearing blue in support of Ruthie whose favorite color is blue. The public is also being urged to wear blue.
For more about Ruthie’s medical condition and community efforts to support her and her family, see upcoming editions of The Union Times and visit our website (www.uniondailytimes.com) and Facebook page.
Charles Warner can be reached at 864-762-4090.