HAYES CENTER, Nebraska -- The Hayes County community plans a medical expenses fund raiser Sunday, Oct. 28, for 28-year-old Justin Hamilton of rural Palisade, Nebraska, as he battles a congenital skin condition and seeks treatment.
Proceeds from a sloppy joe supper and an auction will help Hamilton as he checks out treatment options for a condition called CEP, or congenital erythropoietic porphyria, at the UTMB Porphyria Center in Galveston, Texas. CEP causes extreme sensitivity to sunlight, blisters, bone fragility, severe scarring and loss of facial features and fingers.
The Night N Gals Club plans the fund raiser in Hayes Center High School's old gym. Sloppy joes, salads, beans, chips and dessert will be served from 5 p.m. until 6:30 p.m. Free-will donations will be accepted.
The auction of donated items starts at 6:30 p.m. Club members are seeking donated items, and suggest baked goods, home-canned foods and home-made crafts, gift baskets and gift certificates. Contact Deb Lawson (308) 286-3633 or (308) 650-9399; Amie Broz, (308) 286-3264 or (308) 340-7764; Jo Werkmeister, (308) 362-4481; or Char Hamilton, (308) 286-3388 or (308) 350-3388.
Monetary donations may be mailed to Deb Lawson at 73850 Ave 365A, Hayes Center, NE 69032.
Justin Hamilton is a native of Hayes Center, having graduated in 2002. He attended Mid-Plains Community College in North Platte, earning a degree in HVAC (heating, ventilation and air conditioning). However, he is now experiencing difficulty continuing that career, as his scarred hands make it difficult to hold hand tools. He is also experiencing increased problems with his eyesight.
Possible treatments include bone marrow transplants and blood transfusions, which are reported to be successful in producing normal levels of a needed enzyme and reserve the disease's symptoms. Gene therapy and stem cell transplantation may be future options.
Justin is the son of Dave Hamilton of Wauneta and Lesa and Jim Johnson of Hayes Center. His grandparents are Bob and Alta Keating of Palisade and Bob and Clara Jean Hamilton of Wauneta. Justin and his wife, Holly (Dack) have been married since June 2011.