Community supports boy battling cancer Submitted: 10/20/2013
Story By Shardaa Gray

MERRILL - No parent wants to see their child in pain.

But that's something a Merrill family battles after their three-year-old son was diagnosed with cancer.

Their community is giving them their support.

Brian Stollarczyk preaches at Trinity Lutheran Church in Merrill.

He gives comfort to people in their time of need.

Now he needs their comfort.

"Back in April our son went through a period where he got real pale and then suddenly had a little fever," Stollarczyk said.

"We thought ok, we'll take him to the doctor and get some antibiotics prescribed."

That's when they found out three-year-old Luke Stollarczyk has Leukemia.

He'll have numerous treatments over the next three years.

"It's even hard to know what to say or what to do. You're just trying to absorb what's happening to your child, much less the treatments they are prescribing," said Stollarczyk.

"Without faith we wouldn't have much to hold on to."

But he says he has a lot to hold on to, a whole community to be exact.

The members of his church decided to put a fundraiser together to help pay with medical bills.

"We saw a need for the Stollarcyk family. Even though there is insurance involved here, there's a lot of extra cost for pastor and Sarah." said Board of Elders chairman, Jack Kleinschmidt.

More than 600 people showed their support at the Merrill Eagle Club Sunday.

"Our pastor sometimes fills in for churches that are without a pastor at the given time. So he really knows a lot of people in the community." Fellowship Ministry board member, Sherrie Kleinschmidt said.

The people Stollarczyk touched are now returning the favor.

For Luke, events like this takes a lot of energy.

He didn't have much to say, but he is grateful.

"Can you say thank you Luke? Thank you."

With the help of his community and family, Luke will need to save that energy for his battle ahead.

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