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OC Girl Organizes Fundraisers For Cancer-Stricken Friend

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RANCHO SANTA MARGARITA (CBSLA.com) — An 11-year-old Ladera Ranch girl is doing her part to help her best friend battling cancer.

Ashley Bussell said she’s watched Katie Hawley’s family drive their beloved daughter back-and-forth to Children’s Hospital Los Angeles several times a week ever since Katie’s neuroblastoma returned in February.

At first, Ashley felt helpless—until she came up with a plan to collect donations for gas money.

“I wanted to take some of the stress off their shoulders while they’re going through this battle,” she said.

Ashley partnered up with Jeff Jannings, the general manager of Las Flores Hand Car Wash in Rancho Santa Margarita.

“She’s a young girl fighting cancer and her family is having a hard time just financially meeting budgets to go to the hospital and visit her and see her and spend time with her. Through Ashley’s raising gas for the family, we were able to do a matching program,” said Jennings.

A few weeks ago, Ashley presented Katie with a certificate worth $800 for gas.

Another fundraiser, called the Gas4Katie Car Wash, kicks off Friday and runs for 10 days at Las Flores Hand Car Wash.

Two dollars from each wash, as well as proceeds from a weekend raffle at a local hot rod show, will be donated to Katie’s family.

“I hope this program will help Katie and she’ll get over her cancer. And then what I want to do is help other kids in Ladera Ranch who are battling cancer or have a really bad sickness,” said Ashley. “I hopefuly want to continue this and have other kids help me in other cities.”

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