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NewsTribune photos/Amy Flanery Nathan Burcar, 8, of Leonore offers a slight smile to his father, Doug Burcar, during a benefit in Nathan’s honor Saturday afternoon at Dave’s LostAnt in Lostant. Nathan was diagnosed with a rare form of muscular dystrophy at age 2, and the benefit will assist his family with expenses associated with his increasing needs. Saturday’s event was a lot of excitement for Nathan, his father said, and he could tell his son was in pain. Nathan said he wanted to work on his Lego castle at home, but wouldn’t admit to being tired. “He won’t tell you about it,” Doug said. “He’ll tell you in the morning.” The event raised about $9,160, not including about $700 from a bake sale and about $4,500 in donations directly to a bank account.
LOSTANT — Nathan Burcar of Leonore, son of Doug Burcar of Leonore and Kyla Vanlandegan of Moline, was only 2 years old when he was diagnosed with Duchenne’s, a rare form of muscular dystrophy.
Now, at age 8, his father says although the boy keeps a positive attitude, he is doing “a little worse each day.” In fact, Doug anticipates that in six months Nathan won’t be walking at all.
That’s why a benefit was organized to help the family with upcoming purchases of an electric wheelchair, ramps and a wheelchair-accessible van. They also will need to widen the doorways of their home, Doug said.
The fundraiser, dubbed “Wheels for Nathan,” was held at Dave’s LostAnt in Lostant and included children’s activities, a hog roast and a bean bags tournament, along with raffles and a silent auction.
Doug raffled off his 1985 Harley Davidson Sportster XLX 1000, which only had 17,000 miles on it.
DawnMarie Borders of Hoffman Estates donated her time Saturday to provide face-painting at the event, asking only that a tip jar be allowed to help cover her travel expenses.
“I’m a mom, so when (Doug) told me the story …” she said, “I can’t say no.” Doug had reached out to the face-painting community via a website, Borders said, and she happily made the two-hour trip in support of the cause.
“I commend him for being a father, putting his pride aside and saying, ‘I need help for my family,’” she said.
Kate Phillips of La Salle attended the benefit and said she knows the family. “They’re a lot of fun,” she said. “Very caring people. They help out other people whenever they can.”
Doug expressed his appreciation for the support he received from the community at the event, adding there were teachers, principals and police officers in attendance. “I think it’s just beautiful,” he said. “A lot of love here.”
Anyone who still wishes to donate can do so through a bank account set up for the family at Illini State Bank.