Pembroke, Ont. couple raffle off 1915 Ford Model T
PEMBROKE, ONT. -- Darwen and Yvonne Briscoe have only had their 1915 Ford Model T for a couple of years, but have decided to raffle it off to raise money for a family friend in need of medical treatment.
“A friend of mine’s daughter either needed a double lung transplant or medication worth over $40,000,” explains Darwen. “He was going to go and re-mortgage his house. He phoned me and told me that.”
It’s a move Briscoe’s lifelong friend Andre Astle was prepared to make for his daughter Ashley Astle, who was diagnosed with allergic asthma just a few weeks ago.
“Asthma interferes with your bronchial tube and the allergies make it worse,” says Ashley, who tells CTV News she suffers from many allergies.
“It’s like a weight on your shoulders. You’re dealing with having health issues, then you have to deal with a huge burden of an expensive medication that isn’t covered.”
“It’s a struggle, it definitely is,” says Astle. “Between taking the puffers and having the side effects of those, and then just being able to go for a short walk takes a lot of energy out of me.”
The treatment is a series of injections that is not covered by OHIP. When the Briscoe’s heard about Astle’s situation, they stopped Astle’s father as he was headed to the bank.
“I said no, we’re going to lottery off my car,” recalls Briscoe. “I can’t see you doing that and paying the rest of your life.”
The couple made up 500 raffle tickets and sold them at $100 a piece, raising $50,000 with over $3700 in additional donations still coming in. Briscoe says all the tickets were gone in two days.
“The feeling is, like you can’t even explain it,” says Astle. “It’s one of those things that is beyond friendship and beyond family.”
The car was raffled off on Valentine’s Day, and won by Rafy Yasso, a car enthusiast and friend of the Briscoe’s.
“It’s still not going to click in until I’m actually sitting in this car,” says Yasso. “Until it becomes a tangible item, it’s not registered yet.”
But Yasso believes the car has a few extra gears of fundraising left in it. He plans to keep it for two years, driving and enjoying it. Then he wants to register the car to continue paying it forward. Yasso’s plan is to register the car so that every two years it goes up for a charitable auction.
“Anybody that wants to try to win that car is more than welcome to win that car, but they’d have to give half the proceeds to either a charity, a family, somebody that can use it and will use it,” says Yasso.
“We are Canadian, this is what we do,” says Yvonne Briscoe, of the overwhelming support from the raffle and intentions of Yasso. “It is community, and love of community and family, and you’ll find that in the valley all the time.”
“And the car will always do what we feel it was meant to do, and that’s help people.”