MILL CREEK - Residents from Randolph County and across the state rallied together to help a family in need - and Saturday night in a small elementary school in rural West Virginia, those concerned, caring residents, their friends and family members attained an amazing goal. Through the generosity of so many who donated, organized, volunteered and purchased items, the group raised a whopping $50,000 to benefit the Chamberlain family. The family lost five members in an early morning fire in Elkins two weeks ago.
Elkins Mayor Van Broughton was one of those dedicated volunteers working at the Saturday evening event.
"It was amazing to see the number of people who packed into the cafeteria to walk for cakes, purchase baskets, buy 50-50 tickets and vie for auction items donated to help," Broughton said. "I want to thank those who came out for a worthy cause to help this family. It was an amazing crowd especially because it was at the same time as the West Virginia University football game."
The Inter-Mountain photo by Beth Christian Broschart
Valley resident Harvey Taylor serves as auctioneer Saturday evening at George Ward Elementary School at an event he helped organize to benefit the Chamberlain Family.
When everything was sold, proceeds from the auction are believed to have raised approximately $50,000.
Broughton said Harvey Taylor and his many volunteers did a great job with the event.
"Harvey actually auctioned a hot dog, and received $305 for it," Broughton said. "Many folks who won 50-50 drawings donated their portion back to the family."
Broughton said he thinks we live in the greatest area of West Virginia.
"If you had never heard of Elkins or Randolph County, you surely have now," Broughton said. "I want to thank residents, volunteers, George Ward Elementary and those who came out to help support this family. This was for a very worthy cause, and the family is very appreciative for the help and support. I hope everyone will keep the Chamberlain family in your thoughts and prayers."
Broughton opened a checking account for donations for the family a week and a half ago.
"As of Friday, we had received $40,000 in donations for the Chamberlains," Broughton said.
Broughton said he and Taylor went to the funeral home and wrote a check for the funeral expenses Sunday.
"We will have the official totals raised so far for the family on Tuesday after the banks open," Broughton said. "I just want to thank everyone again for their hard work and donations. This has been an incredibly hard few weeks, but we worked together to help those in need."