Family, friends to host softball tourney for ETX woman with canc - - Tyler, Longview, Jacksonville |ETX News

Family, friends to host softball tourney for ETX woman with cancer

Wiesie Thomas (l) and mom, Ginger Birss Wiesie Thomas (l) and mom, Ginger Birss

One East Texas town is getting ready to host a "Fired Up" softball tournament this weekend to raise money for a woman in need.

Wiesie Thomas was diagnosed with stage 4 colon cancer in May, 2010, and is unable to work because of her treatments.

And some of Wiesie's family members say the tournament is a way they can bless a woman they say goes above and beyond for everyone else.

"Wiesie's a wonderful person. She loves people, she loves to do things for people, she loves to make people happy," said her mother, Ginger Birss. "She's always been a hard worker, and dependable. She's the best daughter you could ever ask for."

Wiesie's chemo has stopped working twice, and she's now driving back and forth from Dallas to take part in experimental treatments - meaning she can't work as a dental hygienist.

"She just doesn't get enough money on disability to cover her medical expenses, her co-pays, her medicine, the trips up there and back," said Birss. "It gets very costly, and even though she has insurance, it doesn't cover everything."

Friends and family have put together a softball tournament this Saturday to raise funds for her - but her family says it's very hard for Wiesie to accept help from others.

"She is a very private, proud person. She would give the shirt off her back to anybody, but it's hard for her to take help," said her sister-in-law, Misty Johnson, who helped organize the tournament. "And not that she's asking for it. She didn't even ask for us to do this. I just know that her living expenses, her medical expenses, and she's not able to work - that's hard, and she doesn't need something else to worry about."

A worry lifted so she can care for her three kids and three grandkids - and her health.

"What's your hope for Wiesie and for her family?" I asked her mom, Ginger Birss.

"That God will heal her. I mean, he's kept her this far. And that I get to keep my daughter," she said.

The "Fired Up" softball tournament is taking place this Saturday, Sept. 29, at Fair Park and Yates Park in Henderson.

It's a seven-man, three-woman team setup, and registration costs $200 a team.

The first place team will win $300 and a t-shirt; the second place team will win $200 and a t-shirt. The third place team will win t-shirts.

The registration deadline is Friday morning. You can register a team by calling Misty Johnson at 903-258-5575 or Laura Farquhar at 903-646-5215.

Monetary donations can also be made at Henderson Federal Savings Bank into the "Wiesie Thomas Fund."

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