Lights for Linda project exceeds fundraising goal

by Celia Shortt


Donald Sweeney on his URAL with sidecar along with his grandchildren, who sang Christmas carols as they set up and lit luminarias throughout SummerGrove. From left are Jacob Sweeney, Houston Hawes, and Alexander Sweeney; in back, Caroline Hawes.

SummerGrove neighbors’ Christmas Eve luminarias display was record breaking for the Lights for Linda project, as it raised more than $4,000 for the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society and sold 177 luminaria kits.

“Lights for Linda Luminarias truly glowed with the gratitude and enthusiasm of participants this year,” said founder Nancy Sanker. “Our hardworking committee, including Bev Adams, Susan Boyd, Pat Darrow, Eve Long, Jennifer McTier and Judy Sweeney, was overwhelmed by community support.”

Sanker started the project to honor her sister, Linda McGrenaghan, who died after a 19-year battle with leukemia. All proceeds from the luminarias go to LLS, and in its four-year history, Lights for Linda has raised more than $10,000 for the organization.

“Over and over we heard, ‘Thank you for doing this!’” said Sanker. “Our project, which was dedicated to Madeline McTier this year, was about joy from beginning to end.”

McTier was a 17-year-old East Coweta High School student who passed away in September from complications of a brain tumor. She lived in the neighborhood where Lights for Linda began.

This year was the first that the luminarias honored a specific person. “It’s an honor that they would even think of us,” said Madeline’s mother, Jennifer McTier. “SummerGrove is a large community. Even though it is a big community, it is close-knit. So many people have done so many wonderful things.” The 2014 project, already under way for next Christmas, will be the fifth one for Lights for Linda. Sanker and other committee members are already planning on making it an even better year than 2013.

“Next year will be our fifth and we are starting early with a Christmas in July meeting and the goal of raising $5,555 for the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society!” she said. “Our future is bright — follow us at .”

More Local

Fiery Accident Closes I-85 Southbound Overnight

Two semi trucks were involved in an accident in the southbound lanes of I-85 between the Newnan and Moreland exits in Coweta County Tuesday ... Read More

Man Killed in Accident Easter Morning

A male passenger was fatally injured in a single-vehicle accident in Newnan on Easter Sunday morning, and no charges are pending against the ... Read More

Rabies confirmed in racoon in Newnan

On Friday, a Newnan resident reported seeing a raccoon in their yard acting strangely and then running towards them. Newnan Animal Warden C ... Read More

Hwy. 54, Gordon Rd. intersection closed for safety project

Crossing Ga. Hwy. 54 on Gordon Road can be one of the scariest maneuvers in Coweta County. Thanks to a dip in Hwy. 54, it can be hard to see ... Read More

Suspect in Union City killing arrested

The man suspected of killing a Newnan woman in Union City in early April was arrested by authorities in Atlanta late Monday. Irwin Clint Dre ... Read More

Public safety officials converge for Mantracker

Public safety personnel and law enforcement officers from all over Georgia are crowding to Coweta County this week for the 2014 Mantracker P ... Read More