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The Van Wert County Courthouse

Saturday, Sep. 23, 2017

VW independent/submitted information

“Live United” is the slogan for the United Way of Van Wert County. But it means more than that for a Convoy man and his family, as they have been both on the giving and receiving ends of the community’s generosity.

Michael Chesbro is in the midst of a battle with Stage 4 esophageal cancer. This summer, The Angel Foundation, a United Way partner agency, granted Chesbro’s wish, sending him, his wife, Amanda, and their five children (ages 7-17) to Kalahari Resort and Water Park in Sandusky for a weekend of family fun and memories.

The Michael Chesbro family at Kalahari Resort and Water Park. (photo submitted)

In July, the Chesbros, along with a friend of one of the children, enjoyed a few days of water slides, wave pools, and relaxation — a welcome break from their regimen of chemotherapy treatments every few weeks at the James Cancer Center in Columbus.

“We were very thankful for the trip,” said Chesbro. “It was a great family time to bond, have adventure together, and create some fun memories.”

The Angel Foundation worked together with local businesses to make the trip possible. Pizza Hut donated gift cards, Brookside Convenience store donated gas cards, Lee Kinstle GM donated a van rental and gas money, while The Angel Foundation covered lodging, food, and other expenses.

For Chesbro, being the recipient of others’ goodwill is payback for the many years he has volunteered in the community.

For several years, Chesbro coached baseball through the Convoy Sports Center and was on the United Way Committee at his employer, Eaton Corporation, where he helped organize the annual United Way campaign, raising donations and helping with events, such as Bag Bingo, throughout the year (Eaton employees have also been generous in support of the Chesbro family in its time of need).

“’Cheesy’ is a great example of a United Way volunteer giving of his time and effort,” said United Way Executive Director Vicki Smith. “When he got sick and was diagnosed with cancer it was sad. But it’s great that we are able to reach out to him when he is in need through one of our partner agencies.”

Founded in 1995 and based in Van Wert, The Angel Foundation grants wishes to adults throughout Ohio who have a life-limiting illness. The program is affiliated with Community Health Professionals, but supported separately through private donations and United Way funding.

“We truly thank God,” said Chesbro. “You don’t know how much support you have until you’re faced with something like this. The community has been so kind, loving and generous. We feel the presence of God in it all.”

POSTED: 09/13/17 at 8:19 am. FILED UNDER: News