Old Chicago raises over $5,000 for its former employee Nick Shifflet
summit daily news
Summit County, CO Colorado
A former Summit County resident received a helping hand this week to battle his growing medical cost.
Old Chicago donated 10 percent of its sales on Thursday, totaling $5,201, to its former employee Nick Shifflet, who is battling cancer. With more donations anticipated, Old Chicago managers believes the total will reach about $6,000.
The restaurant also hosted silent and live auctions, and staff at the Silverthorne restaurant donated their tips to Shifflet, which totaled $1,356.
“He was a friend to everybody that worked there,” Gretchen Peterson said, an Old Chicago field-marketing specialist. “He had to leave his job … pretty much because of this cancer he had.”
The 28-year-old Shifflet was diagnosed with a primitive neuroectodermal tumor in February. It’s a rare cancer that typically is found in people under 18. The varying symptoms include weakness or change of sensation in one side of the body, nausea, personality and behavior change, change in energy level and more.
“Nick had had a job putting up a retaining wall and started talking about his shoulder bothering him,” Jason Klein said, Shifflet’s good friend and former boss. “We just thought it was from the job and his body was broken down. But he continued to complain and went to the doctors. They thought he had a spinal injury, and when we heard this lead to cancer, we were blown away.”
The cancer caused Shifflet to lose his job; home; two vehicles; and dog, Bernie; and it forced him to leave Summit County after living here for five to six years, he said.
He is currently residing in Colorado Springs, where he sleeps on a hospital bed in his dad’s home office.
The fundraiser was the idea of Shifflet’s friends. Klein approached Old Chicago officials, who said the company was more than happy to help in any way possible.
“Old Chicago has been tremendous in their generosity,” said Suzie Klein, a friend of Shifflet since 2003.
Shifflet said he is truly grateful for the help ” not only the fundraiser, but also the support throughout his time battling the disease.
“I seen ’em more as like a family, and it was a big surprise, big shock to know I have such a support group and so many people that support me and love me, and it’s an outstanding feeling,” Shifflet said.
His friends found it easy to help because Shifflet was always a giving person in nature, Jason Klein said.
“He was a super hard-working guy, blue-collar guy in nature,” Trever Hayes said, Shifflet’s former co-worker. “Always had a good personality, cracking jokes with a
bearded smile on his face. Couldn’t have been too much better of a co-worker.”
Shifflet also receives support from a website that allows people to check his medical progress, “www.carepages.com.” It gives visitors a chance to leave Shifflet notes that help him keep fighting.
“My friends and family can go to check-up on me, and it’s been outstanding what people write. To have that support has given me a lot of momentum and inspiration to do as well as I can,” Shifflet said.
Jonathan Batuello can be reached at (970) 668-4653 or email@example.com.
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