PERU – Family and friends are rallying to help a Mexico native who has lived his life helping others and now finds himself needing help.

Construction worker Larry “Boo” LaPointe, 53, of Newton Avenue in Dixfield, suffered a brain tumor in 2004, kidney cancer in 2006, shoulder surgery on a torn rotator cuff in 2007 and a lumber-milling accident this summer at his home.

Eighty-five percent of his left hand was severed in that freak accident on Aug. 13, which required a flight from Rumford Hospital directly to Massachusetts General Hospital in Boston to reattach the hand, according to his wife, Jayne, and their son Larry LaPointe III of Peru.

After a nine-hour operation and five days in the Boston hospital, LaPointe Jr. was released, only to be back the following week due to an infection.

Eight days and four surgeries later, LaPointe Jr. must now undergo more surgery every few months at Massachusetts General, and therapy three days a week for the next two years in Farmington.

“Dad’s gotten more miles in ambulances and a helicopter in the last three years than he has in his own vehicle,” Larry LaPointe III said Friday.

LaPointe Jr. “is the type of person who gives 110 percent and his glass is always half full. He likes to do for others,” said his wife.

The man who cleared snow all last winter from his elderly neighbors’ driveway, helped his son build a house, volunteered as a Little League coach, helped the Dixfield Farm League baseball team and worked for the Boosters Club will be repaid in kind.

Family and friends have organized a benefit supper, dance and Chinese auction of donations including heating oil, firewood and a black bear hunt, among other things. The event will be held from 4:30 p.m. to midnight Saturday, Nov. 8, at the Rumford Eagles Club at 13 Oxford Ave.

The money raised will help Jayne and Larry LaPointe Jr. meet medical expenses.

Kim and Mike Chiasson of Mexico are handling the dinner, the Eagles donated the hall and the band One Step Ahead will donate the music.

Starting at the age of 24, Boo had four back surgeries, the last of which fused the base of his back with a bone from his hip, his son said.

He recovered and returned to his job with Bancroft Construction at International Paper in Jay.

“There ain’t nobody that’s outworked him. He’s a hard worker and he even outworked me,” said LaPointe III, who is employed by Hancock Lumber in Bethel.

Due to the tumor, LaPointe Jr. must have MRI and CAT scans every six months, because the tumor could return.

Until the Aug. 13 accident, everything was going as well as could be expected for LaPointe Jr., who was learning how to walk, talk and eat.

“I just wonder, how can so much go wrong with one person? He never complains even though he’s in pain every day. If it wasn’t for that, I wouldn’t have made it in the 37 years we’ve been married,” Jayne LaPointe said.


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