(NOTE: The benefit for Amy Koplin has been held, but fundraising for her continues.)
"Assembly for Amy" is the title of an NDAD-sponsored May 10 benefit at the East Grand Forks (Minn.) American Legion for Amy Koplin, a married Grand Forks mom of two sons who has metastatic breast cancer that spread to her bones and brain.
The benefit for Amy, 48, a Grand Forks native and 26-year JR Simplot plant employee, runs from 5:30 to 9:30 p.m. that night, a Friday, and includes a freewill-donation sloppy joes dinner, featuring a variety of potato products; silent auction; bake sale and 50/50 raffle.
All proceeds will be used to help the Koplin family with mounting medical and general living expenses.
Amy and her husband, Joe, have been married for 23 years and have two sons, Jacob, 15, and Justin, 12. Their sons have been attending the same schools Amy did growing up: Winship Elementary, Valley Middle School and, in Jacob's case, Grand Forks Central, where his mom graduated in 1990.
Joe Koplin is a 31-year employee at Simplot, where he and Amy met.
Amy is the youngest of Louie and Artice Brandt's eight children and has always lived on the north end of Grand Forks. Her father owned gas stations in town, and her mother also worked at Simplot, for 30 years. Both parents were ordained ministers and well known in the community.
You need not wait until the benefit to help Amy:
Click the "Donate Now" digital button at the top of this page and use your credit card or PayPal account to make a donation online; or... Mail a donation to NDAD, c/o Amy Koplin Fundraiser, 2660 S. Columbia Road, Grand Forks ND 58201. Make checks payable to NDAD and please print "Amy Koplin" on your check's memo line.
For information about contributing to the benefit's silent auction or bake sale, contact Shawn LaQue at (701) 620-1282 or Shawn.Laque@simplot.com.
NDAD is sponsoring the event through its free Community Fundraisers Program. Learn more about it HERE.
Open and download a .PDF copy of the Koplin benefit fundraiser poster HERE
Here is Amy's own summary of her health situation:
"On Christmas Eve 2014, I had a ultrasound and mammogram and soon found out I had breast cancer. I had a double mastectomy in February 2015, followed by chemotherapy.
"In 2016, I found another lump in the breast tissue that has metastasized to the bones. I've been doing treatments of radiation and chemo to try and control the cancer.
"In February 2019, a mass was found on my brain, and I was referred to the Mayo Clinic. My husband and two sons spent a week in Rochester, (Minn., site of the Mayo Clinic complex), while I had radiation and brain surgery. I will be starting another treatment plan once I have fully recovered from the surgery.
"I will be returning to Rochester for more tests and treatments in the coming months.
"I have been very fortunate to have a job that I've had for 26 years, but must now leave."