(NaturalNews) Neighbors of a Salem, Oregon resident did not appreciate the weekly yard sales nearby and asked the City to shut them down, apparently not knowing the proceeds were paying for a woman's bone marrow cancer treatment. Since the story made national news, Jan Cline has received over $16,000 in donations and payments for her family heirlooms and china plates.
Very distraught and crying in interviews, Jan Cline couldn't understand why the City of Salem couldn't show some human kindness and make an exception for her case. The Mayor has responded, after receiving phone calls and emails from all over the country, by offering alternative solutions for Cline, such as a commercially zoned location for more room and possibly more sales. Cline's main reason for the backyard sale is because she's afraid to walk since the cancer is weakening her bones, for fear she may break something.
With no job, no income, and no health insurance, the yard sales are Cline's only source of revenue, yielding around $200 per weekend. But with the cancer treatments amounting to thousands of dollars each month, it looks like the whole incident is a blessing in disguise.
Salem's mayor, Anna Peterson, has been forthright in promising to help Cline, and since the story has gone viral on the internet, it looks like help is coming from several fronts. Cline's internet savvy friends set up a website which is working like a charm. One man bought two candle sticks for $100, even though they were for sale for just two dollars. Cline said, "I am totally amazed at the generosity of people and how quickly it's growing."
Last year Cline wrote a letter to President Obama explaining how she was struggling to pay for skin cancer treatment without having health insurance. Obama wrote her back, and she's been trying to sell the letter for several thousand dollars to raise funds.
Jan Cline, 64, was not aware of the law regarding a maximum of three yard sales per year, and she thought the backyard operation was not intruding on anyone's privacy, but she guessed wrong. A city code enforcement officer showed up at her door Monday and told her she was breaking the law, and she could wind up paying a fine and facing jail time if the sale continued. The city official defended the city's position, saying they were just investigating a complaint, and that Cline was not a targeted case, but the city doesn't want personal flea markets all over town.
Cline's defense of the situation has been that she is a legitimate, resourceful businesswoman who respects her community and society, and that she wasn't looking for handouts. Since the bone cancer has worsened, she has not been able to run her two businesses; one being an educational toy company and the other a limousine service.
"I'm not the type to let the government pay my way," Cline told National News.