2015-10-01 / Front Page

Fundraiser set for ‘good family man’

By Amy Hubbell Of The Enterprise staff


ZANE BARNES, a 33-year-old father of four, is battling incurable cancer. A benefit is set for Oct. 11 to help his family with medical and related expenses. ZANE BARNES, a 33-year-old father of four, is battling incurable cancer. A benefit is set for Oct. 11 to help his family with medical and related expenses. Zane and Kim Barnes were in a good place in early August.

The Kasson Township couple was preparing for the birth of their fourth child, working hard and living the dream.

Less than a month later they were on the road, making a trip to the Mayo Clinic seeking cancer treatment.

Zane, 33, was diagnosed with a rare and incurable cancer, adenocarcinoma, in his gastro-intestinal tract.

“He was going to the doctor with stomach pains. They just kept telling him it was acid reflux,” his sister, Brenda Culbertson said.

Zane, the son of Reuben and Becky Barnes of Elmwood Township, was attending a bachelor party for a friend when the pain became unbearable.

He got to the emergency room at Munson and tests taken throughout a week-long stay confirmed a cancer diagnosis.

Although Kim was in her last month of pregnancy, appointments with Mayo physicians were scheduled for the first week of September, requiring them to leave Sept. 4.

“We were hoping the baby would come before that,” Culbertson said.

A baby girl, Zebrina, was born Sept. 2 at home, just like her older brothers — Zac, 9 and Kyler, 7 — and sister, Karlee, 5.

Zac attends Glen Lake School. His younger siblings are homeschooled.

Zane, a 2001 graduate of Traverse City West High School, worked hard on his family farm growing up in Elmwood Township. His strong work ethic continued on the gridiron, where as he was a football standout for the Titans.

His dedication and strength has served him well in his adult life as a longtime employee of Team Elmer’s.

“He’s a hardworking family man,” said Tim Johnson of Cedar, a firefighter who met Zane through mutual friends. “He’s one of the most honest people I’ve ever met.”

Zane and Kim returned to the county earlier this week after his initial chemotherapy treatment at Mayo. He will receive chemo every other week at Munson. Meanwhile, he is making twice-a-day trips to the hospital for antibiotic infusions to fight an abdominal infection.

The aggressive treatment schedule isn’t getting him down.

“He jokes with medical staff during his procedures,” Culbertson said. “He has high hopes. His spirits are high. He’s going to do whatever he has to get through this.”

The Barneses do have medical insurance. However, it’s not expected to cover all of medical costs. There will also be additional costs, not the least of which includes taking care of their four young children.

A GoFundMe account established less than a week ago has already raised $19,600 for the family.

In addition, Team Elmer’s will host a benefit on Sunday, Oct. 11, at the VFW Hall in Traverse City.

Offerings will include a spaghetti dinner with Moomer’s ice cream, a silent auction and live music. The Two Old Broads & Three Buddies will perform from noon to 2 p.m. and the Villette Brothers from 2 to 4 p.m.

Donations will be taken at the door and will continue to be accepted online at gofundme.com.

The VFW Post is located at 3400 Veterans Dr., in Traverse City.

Return to top