Items ranging from Donna Fargo souvenirs to racing memorabilia will be auctioned Saturday night to help offset medical expenses amassed by a Surry County commissioner who died last month.
The auction is planned at the Flat Rock Ruritan Club building at 1070 Linville Road as part of recent efforts on behalf of Garry Scearce. Scearce, a first-term member of the county board of commissioners representing the Mount Airy District, died at age 52 on July 22 after battling cancer since last year.
Huge bills were amassed during that fight which have been left behind for Scearce’s widow, Vicki, to deal with, prompting a group of friends — led by Janice King and Sharon Burchette — and family members to organize Saturday’s auction as a way to help.
The sales will begin at 6 p.m., but the doors at the Ruritan building are to open at 5 p.m., when prospective buyers are urged to arrive in order to sign up and receive bidding numbers.
King said an appealing list of products and services has been assembled for the auction, with the help of donations from local businesses and individuals such as Fargo.
A Johnson guitar signed by the Nashville-based singer who hails from Mount Airy will be on the auction block along with a rhinestone purse and CDs she’s autographed.
Also to be auctioned are NASCAR souvenirs, an amethyst 14-karat gold ring from the Mullins pawn shop and jewelry store, an entertainment center, a health club membership, a rocking chair, paintings and other items including jewelry crafted by Eddie Harris. Harris served with Scearce on the county board.
King also said that gift certificates or cards have been contributed by just about every restaurant in the Mount Airy area along with other businesses.
Raffle and 50/50 contests also are planned Saturday, and King said foods such as hot dogs, nachos, chips, desserts and drinks will be available as well.
Saturday’s event is open to everyone, and even those who aren’t interested in the auction are still urged to attend for the food or to visit with Vicki Scearce, King said.
In addition, donations can be made to help allay the medical costs.
“We really hope to get a good turnout,” King said Wednesday.
Dealing With Loss
The loss of Scearce has left a void in county government which observers say will be difficult to fill, but his legacy includes the fighting spirit displayed during the illness from which others can learn.
“I think the thing we can carry from Garry’s life is, when things get tough on us, reflect on how Garry dealt with it and live like that,” former County Manager Dennis Thompson said during a tribute for Scearce earlier this week.
Dennis Burnette, the chaplain for Surry County Emergency Services — which Scearce served with before his retirement — said one of the best ways to remember the late commissioner is to honor him “with our lives.”
Burnette added that he would like Scearce to know, “We’ll do the things you’ve taught us — we’ll be friendly and know you had a positive influence on our lives.”
The chaplain acknowledged that Scearce is gone “and we’re going to miss him, but we’ll see him again.”
Editor’s note: Staff reporter Keith Strange also contributed material for this article.
Reach Tom Joyce at 719-1924 or tjoyce at heartlandpublications.com.