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Benefit breakfast will help Norwood resident

By Marina Shankle
for the SNAP
Gwen Atkins, of Norwood, has spent much of her life working in Stanly County. She worked at Smith’s Supermarket in Norwood and at the Brown Jug in Norwood with her first husband, the late Bob Boles. She has also served as a cafeteria manager at North and South Stanly high schools.
In January of this year, Atkins was diagnosed with leukemia. She underwent intense chemotherapy and radiation treatments at Carolinas Medical Center, resulting in a four-week stay and multiple trips back and forth to the hospital with her husband, Larry Atkins.
The next step of treatment for Atkins was a stem cell transplant. For that, she needed a donor.
In April, Atkins’ sister, Tammy Brewer, of Norwood, began testing to see if she could be a stem cell donor for Atkins.
“On May 24, I was able to donate my stem cells to my sister,” Brewer said.
Atkins’ battle with leukemia continues, involving multiple treatments and trips to the hospital.
“Gwen will have to travel back and forth to Charlotte three to four times a week for at least two months,” Brewer said.
To help Atkins with her medical expenses, the Family Life Committee of the First United Methodist Church of Norwood is hosting a breakfast benefit starting at 6 a.m. Saturday at the church fellowship hall, 208 Pee Dee Ave., Norwood. Breakfast plates will be available, for a donation, until they are all sold out.
For more information about the benefit, contact the church office at 704-474-4160.

Marina Shankle is a freelance contributor for The Stanly News & Press.