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Fundraiser helps Kenadie

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By Michelle Hollenhead

The community responded in droves over the weekend to help a family facing medical expenses.
A BBQ benefit was held Saturday and Sunday at St. Paul’s Lutheran Church in Wartburg to help the family of Kenadie Anderson, who is suffering from a disease that will require brain surgery July 20.
Kenadie’s uncle, John Boy Caddell, his wife, Nicole, family friend, Dustin Crowder, and many other volunteers cooked ribs, pulled chicken and pork and other treats starting Friday. They cooked throughout the weekend and had to make numerous food runs, locally and all the way to Knoxville, to keep up with the demand.
John Boy was more than happy to cook up his well-known BBQ to help his niece, as he has been known to do for many others in the community during times of need.
Kenadie, 12, has Chari Malformation, a congenital condition she has had since birth, her grandfather John Caddell Jr. explained Saturday.
“When she was born, doctors noticed [her condition], but said she would grow out of it,” he said.
The disease is defined by the fact that sufferers’ brains are too large for their skulls, Caddell further explained.
Kenadie had led a normal life until about two months ago, when she was at a friend’s house, and passed out.
Caddell said the only symptom Kenadie had suffered previously was excruciating headaches.
“But she has been very brave,” her grandfather said. “I know I could never be as brave as she has been.”
He said Kenadie  “has good days and bad days.“If headaches are on a scale of 1 to 10, a 7 is a good day for her.”
She is also looking at a long recovery period, including extended ICU time, then at least six months of recuperation.
Kenadie and her family  — including her parents, Jack and Autumn Anderson — live in Joyner, and have rallied around her, as has their church family, St. Paul’s Lutheran Church, and others in the community.
Caddell said the family has been long-time church members, noting that with his grandchildren, seven generations have attended.
“The support from our church family has been overwhelming,” Caddell said. “God blesses us every day, but sometimes, He just opens the floodgates.”
He said the entire experience has been “very humbling,” and it has just reinforced his belief that “God will provide.”