Baumholder community raises $30,000 to help students pay tuition
May 6, 2007
BAUMHOLDER, Germany — Lawanda Cooper did it for all the wives out there whose husbands hog the remote control.
For the relentless flicking, which always seems to bypass “Grey’s Anatomy” for ESPN, she took her revenge on Sgt. Maj. Reginald Cooper.
“It was worth every penny,” said Lawanda, who bid $75 to smash a whipped cream pie into the face of her husband. “And it was for a good cause.”
The Baumholder military community gathered Friday for the 16th annual Buc Night to raise money for this year’s graduating class of Baumholder High School Bucs.
Just about everything was up for bid. A slew of colonels stood on stage, where they were victimized with pies for a price. Sports memorabilia was raffled off in an endless stream. Then there were the big-ticket items, which were auctioned off in bidding wars.
By the end of the night, $30,000 was raised. After expenses, there should be about $25,000 available to help the high school graduates with their college tuition, said Jackie Wilmot, co-chairwoman of the event.
“The whole community comes together for this,” she said.
For many of the seniors, the support from the Baumholder community is an important financial boost.
“Tuition is high these days and I want to help out my parents,” said senior Dequinton McCoy, who will be attending Lamar University in Texas.
“It makes a difference,” added fellow senior Derek Mundt, who will attend the University of Dubuque in Iowa.
The money raised is a point of pride for Baumholder’s tight-knit military community. Hundreds of people roamed around the garrison’s Rheinland Convention Center, where there was a country fair atmosphere. Amusements, cotton candy and barbecue were served up while prospective bidders examined some of the items that would be auctioned off later in the evening.
A gourmet Italian dinner at the home of Lt. Col. Derek Rountree, the garrison commander, was auctioned off for nearly $2,000. When Rountree offered to serve dinner twice, an additional $1,700 bid was made.
One item that got a lot of attention was a voucher for two nights at a bed and breakfast in Ireland. Courtesy of the 1st Battalion, 35th Armor Regiment, the package came with plane tickets and a healthy supply of Irish whiskey. It eventually went for $1,250.
“People donate money,” said Debora Deane, wife of 1-35 Armor commander Lt. Col. Tony Deane. “They really come through.”