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Mike Moore is pictured with his wife Sarah and 7-year-old son Ryan. Moore was diagnosed with blastomycosis on March 15. (Submitted photo)

Rallying around one of their own

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SAM’s Corner Bar & Grill owner Mike Moore has lived in the New Richmond area his whole life.

He has a wife, Sarah, as well as a young son, Ryan, who turns 7 in April. The family is also expecting their first baby girl in April. Moore has worked at many local businesses and restau­rants in his lifetime before opening SAM’s with his wife back in early 2013.

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On March 15, Moore was diagnosed with blastomyco­sis, which is a rare type of fungal pneumonia caused by breathing in the Blastomyces dermatitidis fungus. The fun­gus is found in wood and soil, and according to Sarah Moore, the doctors believe Mike came in contact with the fungus when he was on the North Shore of Lake Superior in October.

“There hasn’t been a lot of change since he got here (Regions Hospital in St. Paul, Minn.), but the doctors say that baby steps are good since we are making steps in the right direction,” Sarah said last week. “Right now there is no timeline and we are just taking things day by day. Mike’s parents, my par­ents and our families have been a great support through all of this. We’ve also gotten a lot of support from the New Richmond community and our friends there.”

As of Monday, March 24, according to an update by Sarah on the Mike’s Progress Facebook page, Mike’s oxy­gen levels have gone up and his chest X-Ray has shown improvement. Mike is no longer on paralytics or blood pressure medication and does not have a fever, but is still sedated. Another sign of improvement was Mike being able to squeeze Sarah’s hand twice.

A benefit for the family is planned for May 9, at Ready Randy’s from 4-10 p.m. with spaghetti dinner from 5-7:30 p.m. Dave Deville will be the DJ and emcee.

Until then, anyone who wishes to help support the Moore’s can do so by send­ing a donation to the Mike Moore Benefit Fund at the Royal Credit Union in New Richmond or by visiting the family’s YouCaring.com page (youcaring.com/med­ical-fundraiser/cheddar-for­cheek/152231) and click the “Give Now” button. Sarah is also giving daily updates on her husband’s health on the Mike’s Progress Facebook page (facebook.com/groups/1414702138784371).

“I’m just blown away by the community support we have gotten already,” Sarah said. “People had started to contact me asking how they could help or how they could donate money to help support us. That is when I decided to start the YouCare.com page, which was the only free site for donations that I could find. Mike knows a ton of people in New Richmond and there has been an amaz­ing amount of support from them and people I don’t even know.”

Mike first felt sick a few weeks ago at the beginning of March and only felt worse as the days went by. On Sunday, March 9, Mike went to the emergency room at Westfields Hospital to find out what was wrong with him. The doctors diagnosed him with pneumonia, gave him some medication and sent him home. The next day, he wasn’t feeling any better, and when he accompanied Sarah to her prenatal appoint­ment on Tuesday, March 11, he was admitted to the hospi­tal where he stayed for two nights before being trans­ferred to Regions Hospital. On March 15, the doctors were finally able to diagnose Mike with blastomycosis and started him on an aggressive treatment plan.

“Once he gets well enough, there is a long recov­ery process once he is dis­charged including daily visits to the hospital for several weeks to get an IV drip and then he will have to keep tak­ing an anti-fungal medication for six months to a year and half,” Moore said. “You are never really ready for some­thing like this, but we are a team and we will do anything we have to in order to fight and get through this.”

Without both Mike and Sarah present to run the everyday operations at SAM’s Corner Bar & Grill the restaurant’s hours have been cut back to Thursday-Friday from 3 p.m. to close and Saturday from 11 a.m. to close.

“I can’t do the day-to-day things from here, so for now we are going to cut back the hours,” Sarah said. “Until we get home, I can’t do the inventory or anything else for the restaurant.”

Aside from Mike’s health, the Moores’ new baby girl is due in a just over three weeks. The plan is to give birth at Westfields Hospital when the family is back home, but if Mike is not healthy enough to go home by Sarah’s due date they won’t be having the baby in New Richmond.

“If we are still here when the baby comes I will just deliver here; we’ve got that set up already,” Sarah said. “We will just make the adjustments we need to. There is no telling when the baby will actually come, but we will be ready for that no matter where we are.”

For updates on Mike’s health and the Moore family, go to the Mike’s Progress Facebook page. 

Donations for the Moore family 

Mike Moore Benefit Fund: Donations can be made to the Mike Moore Benefit Fund at the Royal Credit Union by sending the donation to: Royal Credit Union Attn: Mike Moore Benefit Fund 355 S. Knowles Ave. New Richmond, WI 54017 YouCaring.com: Donations can also be made to the Moore family at YouCaring.com by going to youcaring.com/medical-fundraiser/cheddar-for­cheek/152231 and clicking the “Give Now” button.

Facebook updates: For updates on Mike and his fami­ly, visit the Mike’s Progress Facebook group (facebook.com/groups/1414702138784371) where Sarah will post daily updates when she can.

Benefit on May 9: A benefit is planned for May 9 at Ready Randy’s in New Richmond. The benefit goes from 4-10 p.m. with a spaghetti dinner from 5-7:30 p.m. Dave Deville will be the DJ and emcee for the event. Those who would like to help in any way, or have any questions, can contact Melissa Quinn at 715-760-2689.

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Jordan Willi
Jordan Willi is a reporter for the New Richmond News. Previously, he worked as a sports reporter at the Worthington Daily Globe in Worthington, Minnesota. He also interned at the Hudson Star Obeserver for two summers and contributed to the Bison Illustrated sports magazine at North Dakota State University.
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