Williamsburg resident Sharon Wood raised $1,802 for the University Hospital’s Burn Institute in a raffle that took place at the Williamsburg Chase Bank Aug. 12.
“The catalyst for raising money started seven years ago when my husband Robert Wood was killed in a gas explosion in 1998,” Wood said. “The first year after he was gone, I started thinking that I would like to give back to the community that had given he and I so much.”
Robert Wood died as a result of severe burns that he sustained in a propane explosion at the Batavia Auxier Gas Company in August of 1998. In the seven years that have passed since the tragedy, Sharon Wood has raised and donated more than $7,000 in her late husband’s name to the Burn Institute at the University Hospital.
“We gave to homeless shelters at the beginning, and then decided to give to the burn unit because they were so good to my husband,” she said. “The staff that work there with the patients (Sharon Wood works part-time at the Institute) are such a unique people; no one really knows how dedicated and caring they are until they are in the situation that I found myself in eight years ago.”
Williamsburg Chase Bank Manager Tracy Braden said that she was approached by Sharon Wood a couple of years ago about sponsoring a raffle table inside the bank.
“Sharon asked us if we would participate, and it was our pleasure to help generate money for this good cause,” said Braden. “All of the prizes have been donated by caring people in the community. Our customers then buy raffle tickets for the prizes. Today, we will be drawing the names of the winners.”
The raffle items were as follows: a one night stay at the Milford Holiday Inn, donated by Ketki Patel, a one night stay at the Milford Homewood Suites, donated by Ketki Patel, a Red’s two ticket package, donated by the Cincinnati Reds, a $75 Longaberger gift certificate, donated by Tammy Raines, a pink, brown, and white afghan, donated and handmade by Terri Jacques, a $50 Mary Kay certificate, donated by Tracy Braden, a zoo animal baby quilt and pillow, donated and handmade by Linda Bogan, a Boyd’s Bear (Annie Appleton) and Yankee candle (McIntosh), donated anonymously, and a Dale Earnhardt, Jr. tote bag and cordless screwdriver, also donated anonymously.
Wood says that she is still amazed and overwhelmed at the continual support of the charitable efforts in Robert’s name.
“After all this time, I still cannot believe that people still care enough to buy tickets and participate in something like this,” she said. “My husband would be overwhelmed. He was never one to draw attention to himself or anything like that. He would be – as I am – so very thankful to all of the people who have bought tickets and donated over the years. It is amazing that we can raise this kind of money in such a short period of time.”
Wood says she would like to thank all of the people who donated items and bought tickets in this and in previous year’s raffles.
“God bless each and every one of you,” Wood said. “I could never have done this without the love and support of my sister-in-law, my wonderful friends, and all those who have supported me over the years, including Doug Auxier (who provides annual $1,000 student scholarships to Batavia and Williamsburg schools in Bob’s memory). The giving and the caring really means so much. Words cannot express my gratitude.”