Veteran with terminal cancer holds yard sale to pay for own funeral

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BROWNSTOWN, Penn. (WCMH) — A Vietnam veteran in Pennsylvania who is trying to raise money for his own funeral, is now getting some help from two young men who met him at one of his garage sales.

For several weeks, Willie Davis has been setting up his blue canopy and selling his possessions in a yard sale in Brownstown. 

Last month, David Dunkleberger was one of his customers.

“At the end, when we bought a few things, he said to me, ‘If you know of anybody else interested, I’m trying to sell all my stuff to pay for a funeral.’ And when I said, ‘Whose funeral?’ he said, ‘Mine,'” Dunkleberger told WJAC.

That didn’t sit well with Dunkleberger, so he went back out to the car to tell his friend, Ed sheets.

“It broke your heart, hearing the story, and we just decided we had to do something to try and help him, try to make his life a little bit easier,” said Sheets.

Davis is a navy veteran who served for six years, starting in 1970. 

He served during the Vietnam War. 

Now he has terminal cancer: stage 4 squamous cell carcinoma.

“He’s done a lot serving our country, so we wanted to kind of return the favor to him so that, again, his last days could be a little less hectic, a little more peaceful for him,” Sheets told WJAC.

Dunkleberger and Sheets started a GoFundMe, with a goal of raising $5,000.

“His parents have a burial spot in Culpeper, Virginia, and there’s a spot for him, obviously, and with that’s going to come some financial obstacles,” said Dunkleberger

That’s his final wish — a wish that could cost up to $15,000. 

Even with health issues, being in and out of the hospital and in hospice care, Davis finds time to set up his yard sale.

“He tries to do them every weekend he’s able to do them. He just told us yesterday that when he sets it up, he actually sets it up Thursday to run it Friday and Saturday,” Sheets said. 

Two strangers who saw a man in need say they’re now in a race against time to grant Davis’ final wish.

Since being posted, the donation has raised more than $16,000.

If you are interested in donating, go to GoFundMe.com.

Copyright 2019 Nexstar Broadcasting, Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

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