Lemonade stand raised thousands for cancer patient's bills - KTIV News 4 Sioux City IA: News, Weather and Sports

Lemonade stand raised thousands for cancer patient's hospital bills

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SIOUX CITY, Iowa (KTIV) -

Bernie Dumkrieger has been hard at work on this lemonade stand for hours.

"I've got the job of putting ice in the cups and if we get two thousand that might be a tough job," said Bernie.

It's not just to get spending money, it's to help her family pay the bills.  Bernie's mom, Tisha, had thyroid cancer, and in March, they hit their insurance cap for the year.

"My insurance maxed out, so my radiation treatments, my scan, all of that stuff, was completely out of pocket," said Tisha.

"And then I started crying, 'cause I was sad," said Tristan.

When she heard about the mounting medical bills, Bernie offered to sell her most prized possession, a swing set. 

"It really kind of tugged at your heart," said Marvin Japel of Sioux City.

They thought about setting up a coffee stand, mom's favorite drink.  But, they knew a lemonade stand would be the perfect way to beat the heat.  And they were right!

"I said, 'We've got to go down and have lemonade,'" said Japel.

Though the lemonade stand was officially supposed to open up around noon, people were lining up a full two and a half hours before they started, while they were setting up.

"I didn't know we were going to start this early," said Bernie.

People from down the block and even across town stopped at the stand.

"This is the biggest one that I've seen so far for support, especially for a lemonade stand this is huge and it's such a great cause," said Courtney Ryan of South Sioux.

"I don't know what's going to happen because I'm kind of tired right now," said Bernie.

You can't blame Bernie if she's feeling fatigued. Her goal was to reach a thousand people in four hours.

Mom, on the other hand, is energized, after experiencing an outpouring of support from the community, and most importantly her children.

"It's really touching and it really just makes me feel so special to have kids like this," said Tisha.

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