A fundraising Poker Run and Dance will clear about $13,000 after expenses. Its in memory of Bob Hanes, a rescue squad driver killed in the line of duty.
The Cassgram reports there were 260 entered in the poker run this past Saturday. The dance and fundraiser Saturday night at the Cass County Fairgrounds drew about 600 people, said Fred Huffman, one of the organizers.
A guitar autographed by Toby Keith was the single biggest auction item, bringing in $2,300. The Larry The Cable Guy performance package that included a dinner and one night’s stay in Omaha brought about $1,000.
The proceeds this year went to the victims of the crash that killed Hanes and injured two EMTs. Hanes was driving a Weeping Water ambulance that was struck head-on by a small pickup on Highway 34 near Elmwood in June.
There are plans to grow the event and help emergency medical services countywide in the years ahead. Huffman said the core group involved in the initial planning of the poker run and dance is working on setting up a non-profit corporation with the help of the fire and rescue mutual aid association in the county. Huffman, who knows Keith personally from racehorse training circles in Oklahoma, said the country star told him that is the next step to take before looking at attracting national acts for an event.
And already those plans have landed a top country band. The legendary Bama Band, the band that backed country superstar Hank Williams Jr. for 20 years, will be performing in the first part of June in 2014, announces Huffman. The date and venue will be decided at a later date.
Huffman admires the effort the volunteers put in their fire and rescue departments and is proud to help out in this way. “That’s what I love about Cass County. We step up and take care of our own.”