Friends Make The Hard Times Bearable

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Editor:

A huge thank you to Tonto Basin, Gila County folks north and south, and all my friends who gave me a much-needed boost, both financially and emotionally. More than $7,500 was raised through raffles, barbecue, auction, 50-50 drawing and donations. This benefit enabled me to get through 2002 with my head held high.

God gives us every day, and every day now seems to be a bit brighter thanks to so many fine friends and neighbors.

A very special thanks to the Butcher Hook crew: Mitch Vuksanovich, owner, Norma Cline, manager; all the crew who donated their time and efforts: Moose, Donna, Jason, Mack, Mary, Bill and Katy; the auction crew: Mitch, Bill, Jack and Walter; the volunteers who pitched in and filled any gap needed, Hazel, Wayne, Julie, Sandy and Billie June.

Thanks to the Payson Roundup, the Just for You, KMOG-AM, KISS-FM and The Silver Belt for the press and the spoken word.

I thank every one of you who bought a raffle ticket, barbecue plate, bidders, donors of all the fine auction and raffle items, any and all of you who gave a buck or a thousand, everyone who came out both old and new friends and friends who renewed old friendships ... friends from all over.

Super thanks to my dear friend Dr. Mark Ivey for getting the music together that included C. M. Petty, Johnny Collier, Mark Ivey III, Karen Sneed Fulton, Bob Fulton and a guitar player that got away.

Thank you Michelle, Moose, Ashley, Mom and Sister for believing in me.

You all made a really tough year worth it. Love ya all. Merry Christmas and a great 2003.

John O. Dryer, Tonto Basin

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