Snowshoe benefit supports teen diagnosed with lymphoma

NEGAUNEE, Mich. (WLUC) – A benefit at Negaunee’s Lucy Hill Naturbahn Luge brought more than 80 snowshoers out to the trails — and it’s all in support of a local teen diagnosed with lymphoma.

Fourteen-year-old Branden Quayle, a student of North Star Montessori Academy in Marquette, has been getting treatment downstate after being diagnosed with T-cell lymphoma in the fall.

To help take care of medical bills and travel expenses, his closest friends have started a GoFundMe page.

And for the last couple of weeks, they’ve worked with the Upper Peninsula Luge Club on Saturday’s snowshoe event, which features newly created trails complete with pathway lighting.

North Star Montessori Academy Elementary Teacher Autumn Bates organizes the fundraising in support of Quayle’s plight.

“Branden and my son, Kurt went to school together at North Star Montessori Academy and they were like best friends – inseparable. So when we heard the news about Branden, we really wanted to do something,” she said.

The GoFundMe campaign that Bates started, Operation Branden, has raised over $13,000 as of Feb. 27.

“So many people are still donating and I don’t want it to stop because the more they get, the more I know they’ll be stable and ready. And his treatment can go up to five years. So I want to make sure they’re set up for a while.”

Non-profits have also poured in support, like the UP Children’s Fund.

To donate, visit: ‘Operation Branden’ GoFundMe page

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