Western Courier

AgVocators host spaghetti luncheon

William Turkington, Courier Staff

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The Western Illinois University AgVocators hosted a spaghetti benefit luncheon on Monday from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. in Knoblauch Hall 239 to support the family of Karissa Graves, whose mother recently passed away of cancer.

Tickets were sold for $5 and included spaghetti, bread, desert, and a drink. The spaghetti was smothered in meat sauce and the bread was warm and tasty. The desserts comprised of warm M&M cookies and the drinks ranged from a variety of canned sodas to bottled water. The AgVocators all wore their “Neck Up Cancer Sucks” t-shirts they were selling to help the Graves’ family. The team managed to get 225 t-shirt orders before the event at $10 each. The team is still calculating how many people attended the luncheon, which exceeded their expectations.

The event received support from on campus organizations like Alpha Gamma Rho, a Greek life organization for agriculture students, who pledged money towards the event. Local businesses such as Hyvee and Sweet Shack donated food and other gifts.

Leatherneck professors in and outside the agriculture department were quick to get behind the event. However, according to group organizers, no professor was more impactful than Agriculture Communication Professor Jana Knupp.

“We couldn’t have done this without our advisor, Jana Knupp,” said Claudia Bland, who was one of the key students who helped get this event off the ground. “She is amazing and we couldn’t do what we do without her.” The AgVocator team was very pleased with the turnout and the massive support they received from all kinds of sources.

“Our AgVocator team would like to give a shout out to everyone who attended the luncheon,” said Bland. “Our success is attributed to everyone who ate, donated a basket, or donated money.”

The luncheon managed to bring the Leatherneck community together to support a common cause for one of their own in their time of need. Professor Knupp and the agriculture students involved with the luncheon praised that Leatherneck spirit.

“The event was a success and really shows how big of a family we are here at WIU,” said Bland. “Thank you to everyone who supported Karissa and her family through this event.” Karissa’s mother, Kimberly Graves passed away over the weekend after her courageous fight with cancer. Some of Karissa’s friends have put together a gofundme page to assist the Graves family with their added financial burden at this time.

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AgVocators host spaghetti luncheon