by John Armstrong

When was the last time you went “home”? Not to visit a sick friend or relative. Or for a funeral. Just to visit with the people who shared and shaped your life.

My wife, Diane, values these trips more than anything.

A former member of the Navy and volunteer firefighter, her life has been filled with family and friends that have always been there for whatever has come down the road. This has meant so much, especially since Diane was diagnosed with stage 4 lung cancer on December 22, 2014. Yes, the dreaded C word.

Her response is probably not what you would expect. Diane is not weighed down by this news at all. Quite the contrary. Her diagnosis has made us both more appreciative of the important things in life – family and friends – and celebrating all life has to offer to the fullest.

That is why Diane decided she wanted to host a celebration of life and friendship as a way to connect all her friends and family who have meant so much over the years.  Essentially, bringing “home” to her.

The celebration will be held at the Harmony Fire Company at 440 Brainards Road , Phillipsburg ,NJ 08865 on Sunday, March 29 from 12:00 noon to 6:00 pm. We will be having an old fashioned pot luck dinner (with beer) and a silent auction. We are very fortunate to have businesses from New Jersey and Pennsylvania donating everything from gift cards to 3,000 square feet of sod to the fundraiser!

All proceeds will be going to Lung Cancer Alliance (LCA). We chose LCA after researching non profits on line and speaking with patients and their loved ones.

We are happy to say that in addition to the many folks who still live in New Jersey and Pennsylvania, Diane has old Navy friends coming from Minnesota as well as classmates driving up from North Carolina, and relatives from Indiana and Georgia.

It’s been a tough road, but we’re excited to see everyone.  Food, family and friends. All for a good cause.  Not a bad way to think of “home.”