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A night of heroes and high hopes

Live auction earns nearly $100,000 for Boys & Girls Club of SCV

Posted: June 7, 2012 2:00 a.m.
Updated: June 7, 2012 2:00 a.m.

Left to right, World War II veterans Lee Bell, Ed Reiff and Sam Spiegel, with Santa Clarita City Councilman Bob Kellar, second from right, were honored at the 41st annual Benefit Auction for the Boys & Girls Club of Santa Clarita Valley. The event celebrated the theme “Heroes Among Us” and was held June 2 in empty commercial space in Valencia.

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The 41st annual Benefit Auction fundraiser for the Boys & Girls Club of Santa Clarita Valley feted the “Heroes Among Us” in a gala celebration held June 2.

Among the heroes who attended were WWII veterans Lee Bell, Ed Reiff and Sam Spiegel.

Spiegel served in the 9th Air Force in England, France and Germany.

Reiff served with the 1st Marine Division, Marine Corps and served in Guadalcanal and the Solomon Islands.

“Of the 135 men in my outfit, only three made it home,” said Reiff.

Bell served in the Army Air Corps in Europe.

The evening began with students from the club dressed in  bright yellow T-shirts who greeted guests on a red carpet outside the converted empty commercial space off The Old Road in Valencia.

The live auction, which featured more than 50 items raised nearly $100,000 for the club. The total take for the event won’t be known until next week when proceeds from the silent auction, raffle, table sales, sponsorships and the “Heroes and High Hopes” donations are tallied.

Items that fetched the highest bids included: $9,000 split by Dianne and Wayne Crawford, Shelley and G. Marshall Hann and Jacquie and Harold Petersen for the Head Table at the 2013 Benefit Auction,  $6,250 bid for the Princess Cruises 14-day cruise to Hawaii, and a $5,000 bid for a diamond bracelet donated to the auction by Richard and Marian Sandnes.

Another item that became the focus of spirited bidding was the Six Flags Ultimate VIP Package for eight. Be first to ride “Lex Luthor: Drop of Doom.” The item earned $1,300 for the club and was captured by Todd and Karen Stevens.

“I really enjoy going to Magic Mountain and riding the roller coasters,” said Karen Stevens.

Bonnie Rabjohn, president of Six Flags Magic Mountain and Hurricane Harbor, said the theme park has been a long-time supporter of the Club.

“We’re happy to help the club raise a lot of money to help the kids,” Rabjohn said.

Bert and Jane Boeckmann, owners of Galpin Motors, served as event co-chairs.

“It is a wonderful event, and we’re excited to be a part of it,” said Jane Boeckmann. “The club offers help to many deserving youth.”

“This is one of the great social and fundraising events of the year,” said auction founder Tony Newhall.

“And it still is, after 41 years,” said Reena Newhall. The couple served as co-chairs of last year’s 40th annual auction.

Currently, the club serves more than 2,500 SCV youth annually, said Ventress. It operates two clubhouses in Newhall and Canyon Country.

For information about the Boys & Girls Club of SCV and donation opportunities visit or call 661-254-2582.  /  661-287-5590


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