Upon learning that her friend, Marni Levanger, was charged with providing money for a $6,000 deductible of leukemia treatment costs for her son Tait, Carbon County resident Valorie Marietti took matters into her own hands and helped out with eggs, sugar and a healthy dash of the holiday spirit.
“I don’t think people realize that when you get in that situation, especially when it’s ongoing, you can’t get out. It is just so much money and it adds up so quickly,” Marietti said. “You can have $20,000 of debt in a week.”
With her friend traveling to Primary’s Children Hospital for weekly chemotherapy treatments, Marietti wanted to help financially in a way that would not add to the already existing stress of a sick child and others to take care of.
Thus, the idea to help Tait through a cookie fundraiser was born.
What started at first as a few orders for cookies soon blossomed into an order larger than first expected, which turned a panic of not raising enough money to a panic of not having enough cookies to go around.
Reaching out to those around her, however, Marietti, as well as nearly 10 others, had baked approximately 120 dozen cookies to be sold, by the dozen, for ten dollars a box with proceeds directly assisting Tait and his family.
So, with inexpensive brown paper cookie packages and Christmas ribbons with tags reading “#TatetheTrooper, over $1,000 was raised for the Levanger family.
“It was so nice to just go and hand her a big envelope full of cash because I know she’s in desperate need of it,” Marietti said.
Those who still wish to donate to assist the Levanger family in Tait’s treatment are encouraged to donate at Mountain American Credit Union under the account “Tait the Trooper.”