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People Who Care: Melby Memorial Charities

Published: May. 17, 2022 at 10:26 PM CDT
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ROCHESTER, Minn. (KTTC) – On a Monday night at Mayo High school there’s an energy in the air. There’s an adrenaline-filled court, packed with bumps, sets and spikes. High school boy’s volleyball is getting an extra ‘bounce’ thanks to a group called Melby Memorial Charities.

Melby Memorial is celebrating 10 years of serving athletes, especially high school boys who play volleyball. The charity has donated thousands of dollars to help pay for jerseys and volleyballs. Boys volleyball is not sanctioned by the state high school league, so for now, most funding comes from parents, coaches and other sources like the Melby Memorial.

To date, the memorial has given more than $130, 000 to help local athletes buy more than just equipment; often the money is given to help volleyball families in need due to a medical crisis or emergencies.

Paul Fishbaugher is president of the charity. “If we can help just a little bit, so families don’t have to worry about expenses.”

One family that has benefited is the Hunzekers. Ashley and Tyler met playing volleyball. They were blessed with little Genevieve, but then, the family’s nightmare began. At just 3 days old, Genevieve had to undergo surgery to fix a genetic heart condition. If that wasn’t enough, Ashley was fighting her own battle with Hodgkin’s Lymphoma. Ashley says, “It was a challenging year, but we’re on the other side of it. The whole community of volleyball came together to support us during that hard year. They’re an amazing group of individuals on and off the court. It’s like a family.”

For more information, check out Melbymemorialcharities.org

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