Sixteen-year-old Ivie Gibbons has an entire community rallying behind her as she navigates an unexpected journey.
Gibbons, a rising junior and athlete at Carbon Hill High School, was diagnosed earlier this year with stage three Hodgkin's lymphoma, a cancer of the lymphatic system that impacts the body's immune response.
She is currently undergoing chemotherapy treatments to fight the disease.
Prior to attending Carbon Hill High, Gibbons was a student and star volleyball player at nearby Lupton Jr. High School.
This Friday, her Lupton school family will be hosting a fundraiser at the school to help with Gibbons' medical expenses.
"She grew up at Lupton, so everybody at our school, we just feel like she's ours even though she's at Carbon Hill now," Mandi Panter, Gibbons' former volleyball coach at Lupton, told the Daily Mountain Eagle. "We love her, and her younger sister just left this year. We've had their whole family, and we just love them. We want to do everything we can to help them out."
The drive-through fundraiser will be held from 3 to 7 p.m. this Friday in the parking lot of Lupton Jr. High School (1110 Prospect Road in Nauvoo) for people to make monetary donations toward Gibbons' care.
The Saragossa Volunteer Fire Department is also sponsoring a barbecue baked potato fundraiser to coincide with the drive-through effort on Friday.
Proceeds will go to the Gibbons family.
The fire department is accepting pre-orders for barbecue plates that will include a large baked potato with Son's barbecue meat, butter, sour cream, cheese, barbecue sauce, and a dessert for $10. Plates can be picked up from 3 to 7 p.m. at Lupton Jr. High on Friday.
Panter said she hopes people will come out to support the fundraising efforts, and she also had a special message for Gibbons.
"Lupton Jr. High School loves her, and we're praying for her," Panter said.
Support has also poured in for Gibbons from the Carbon Hill community.
A Facebook post on the Carbon Hill Bulldog Volleyball page illustrated unity for Gibbons by simply stating, "No one fights alone."