By Olga Pena

Killeen Daily Herald

It seems to directly or indirectly affect everyone in America. And it doesn't seem to be going away.

In an annual effort to fight the behemoth known as cancer, Jean Shine and her Shine Team Realtors are holding their annual garage sale April 25, with proceeds benefiting the American Cancer Society. Donations are needed now.

Michael DeHart, team captain and Shine Team Realtor, is a cancer survivor himself.

He became a part of the annual fundraiser when he was diagnosed with the disease in 2007.

"This is an opportunity to really have an impact on raising funds for cancer research," DeHart said.

The garage sale is attended by hundreds of people. An estimated $8,000 was raised last year and thousands volunteered, donated and showed up to the communitywide garage sale, as Shine likes to call it.

A five-time cancer survivor, Shine said this event is a chance for the community to find some treasures while raising dollars to support finding a cure.

When asked what the dollar goal was for this year's fundraiser, DeHart joked, "Eleven gamillion dollars.

"You don't know anybody whose family has not been touched by cancer," DeHart said. "There are some diseases that are more politically popular, but there are few, if any, that have the wide impact that cancer does in America."

Item donations will be accepted through Thursday. Shine Team trucks will be located today and Sunday at Farm-To-Market 2410 and Wampum in Harker Heights and Sunday at 2000 Halbert St. in Killeen.

"It's a down economy, but people drive by and make an effort to drop things off – you don't know who they are and they are not asking for anything, they just want to help," DeHart said. "It's really amazing, and it makes you proud to be a part of Central Texas."

So far, the donations range from pianos, furniture, exercise equipment to baby items and clothes in great condition. This year, new items will be available to purchase from Patriot Furniture and Charlotte's of Salado. Hubbert Storage and John Reider Properties have also donated storage space for the event.

"We will have everything you can think of for sale," DeHart said.

There also will be face painting, hot dogs and hamburgers for sale, Puerto Rican barbecue and rice, in addition to the 45 people or so with booths, and thousands of items from the Shine Team.

"In 2009, with the resources we have in this country, we should be able to target cancer like we did polio and smallpox," DeHart said. "We should lead a worldwide effort to find out what we can do to put a stop to this."

The Shine Team garage sale benefitting the American Cancer Society's local Relay for Life will be from 7:30 a.m. to 2 p.m. April 25 in the Extraco Bank parking lot in Harker Heights.

Contact Olga Peñ at or (254) 501-7555.

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