A bbq fundraiser was held at the v-f-w in cuero sunday - in honor of sergeant carol cunningham - to assist with her medical expenses in her fight against cancer.
Reporter carolina astrain spoke with attendees and cunningham about the impact the bbq has made on the financial stress the family will continue to face as part of her fight against cancer.
Carol cunningham and her husband donald - have dedicated their lives to taking in foster children when they can - but since carol's cancer diagnosis - their focus has shifted into survival mode.
Tickets were sold out when the fundraiser bbq started almost an hour early on sunday.
Cuero residents were eager to not only fill their bellies with bbq - they were also looking forward to give back to a hometown hero.
Cuero residents - gina and paul holcomb - stopped by to pick up a bbq plate.
Holcomb: "whenever anyone is in need, this community really pulls together."
Cunningham was diagnosed with triple negative breast cancer in july.
Cunningham: "just taking it day by day."
"i already took one round of chemo, it was every two weeks, a triple dose of chemo.
I finished that about two weeks ago so know i've started on my 12 weeks of chemo now, every week."
"in january i should be finished and then we'll go into surgery, then after that we'll go back into another round of finished and then we'll go into surgery, then after that we'll go back into another round of chemo."
Cunningham says she and her husband have fostered over 120 children over the years, cunningham: "we kept four of them together as brothers and sisters that we adopted.
Every child needs loving and respect."
"you know some kids don't have no place to go, if more people supported these kids, we wouldn't have this problem."
John garoni, a chief deputy with the dewitt county sheriff's office - says he wasn't surprised when he heard that the fundraiser had already brought in over $5,000 to help cunningham with her medical expenses.
Garoni: "it's awesome to see someone that gives so much of herelf ... to see her getting some help that she could really use."
Gives so much of herelf ... to see her getting some help that she could really use."
Once she conquers cancer, cunningham says she's going to start all over and foster children again.
Cunningham: i'm the youngest out of 12... a different kind of way."
And although the path to recovery will be painful - garoni says he and others in the community know cunningham will stay strong.
Garoni: "just keep fighting and the community know cunningham will stay strong.
Garoni: "just keep fighting and get well mrs. cunningham."
In cuero, i'm carolina astrain, for your hometown news in chicago, a seven-year-old girl