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Event to help ailing child

ALBANY, Ga. -- Ten-year-old Easton Blanchard may not be able to attend the event that is being held in his honor Saturday, but organizers say they hope many people will join in the day's festivities to help the Leesburg youngster receive the medical care he needs.

According to Rusty Reed, Easton was diagnosed with muscular dystrophy at a young age, and he also has a rare disease that affects the 10-year-old's small intestines. Easton has had previous intestinal transplants to help deter the disease's advance, but his young body has rejected the transplants so far.

Reed, who is organizing a gospel sing to raise money for another transplant for the youngster, said Easton's family is struggling under the weight of their son's medical bills. But that hasn't stopped the family from taking a positive view about the situation.

"He (Easton) is a very active child and has a good personality about life considering what he has to go through," said Reed. "His family is very supportive and good people."

The gospel sing will take place Saturday afternoon from 6 p.m.-9 p.m. and will include entertainment by three gospel groups, food and fun.

Reed said Crossing 27 and Plaid form Moultrie and Blest from Albany have all agreed to perform at the event for Easton.

Barbecue plates are being provided by Shug'z Bar-B-Que, and RuBo's will also provide plates, napkins and other essentials for the event.

Reed said the overwhelming support from the community for the event has been a pleasure to witness, and he hopes that many people will partake in the event that is scheduled to take place at the Fish Camp on Gillionville Road.

"It is all about helping the Blanchards with expenses and coming together as a community to help a child in need," said the event organizer.

Admission to the event is a minimum $10 donation, and children will be allowed to attend the gospel sing free. Reed said those who wish to donate $20 to Easton's medical fund will be entered in a drawing to win a special prize.