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Leadership Organizers of Spring Yard Clean Up for Cancer hope to pass $1-million mark this year

The donors: Jason, Michael, Richard and Darrel Stubbe

The gift: Raising $700,000 and climbing

The cause: To fund cancer research

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When Richard Stubbe was diagnosed with brain cancer in 2006, he tried everything to fight the disease including participating in a drug trial in Houston.

Mr. Stubbe lost his battle in 2009 and died at the age of 45. His four sons – Jason, Michael, Richard and Darrel – had already started participating in a fundraising event to raise money for cancer research. But after their father died, they wanted to do much more. In 2010, they started going door-to-door in their area around Norwich, Ont., southwest of Brantford, asking if they could do some yard work in return for donations. That became the Spring Yard Clean Up for Cancer, an annual one-day event that now involves around 130 volunteers who work on more than 100 yards, doing raking, shrub trimming, grinding stumps and even stacking firewood. “Anything you need done outside, we do it,” said Jason, who works in the family’s business, called Stubbe’s Precast, which makes concrete products.

The event has raised $700,000 in total so far and the money has gone to a variety of research projects including a new leukemia treatment program at McMaster University. This year’s event is on April 27 and the brothers are hoping to raise $300,000 to top the $1-million mark.

“As family, it has been great to see this event grow,” Jason said. “Not only are we making a difference every year, but we are making a 'bigger’ difference every year! In some way, the event helps keep Dad’s memory alive for us as well.”

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