FLORENCE, S.C. — Cooks for Christ will sponsor a chicken bog benefit for Richard “Ricky” Anderson of Florence on Thursday at the West Florence Fire Station on Pine Needles Road in Florence.

Anderson, 58, worked as a contractor for most of his adult life, but later in life he discovered his love for restoring historical homes and buildings to their former glory. He also enjoys playing his guitar, singing, country music and firing up his old wood stove and cooking for a crowd. He has two daughters, Katie and Nikki, and four grandchildren.

In April 2019, Ricky was admitted to McLeod Health, and it was determined that he had a softball sized aneurysm in his aortic valve that could rupture at any time. After further testing, it was discovered that he has myelodysplastic syndrome (MDS), which is an aggressive blood cancer that can quickly progress into acute myeloid leukemia.

His doctors at McLeod consulted with doctors at Hollings Cancer Center at MUSC and decided to transfer him there to have surgery to repair the aneurysm. The surgery was a success, and he began his first round of chemotherapy and was able to return home after 16 days at MUSC.

Since being home, Ricky has been hospitalized numerous times and now weighs only 89 pounds. He is extremely weak and needs around-the-clock care. He goes to McLeod several times each week to get blood and platelet transfusions as maintenance between chemotherapy treatments.

Anderson is in need of a stem cell transplant and will be required to stay in Charleston for 100 days after having the transplant to be sure his body does not reject the new cells.

The bills are piling up, and there are no funds to pay them. His insurance premiums have emptied his accounts.

Cooks for Christ is raising funds to help pay for his stem cell transplant and expenses following the transplant.

For Anderson’s benefit, lunch will be served from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m., and dinner will be served from 4 to 7 p.m. Drive-through lanes will be open for convenience, and a bake sale will be held all day. The menu consists of chicken bog, green beans, slaw and bread.

Plates are $8 each. Lunch and dinner can be delivered for orders of seven or more plates. To schedule a delivery, complete a delivery form and fax or email according to instructions on the form.

To donate, make checks payable to “Richard Anderson Medical Fund.”

For additional information, contact Katie Lee at 843-618-8665, Nikki Anderson at 843-468-0755 or Beverly McKee at 843-229-0348.

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