Wednesday - Sep 20, 2017

Heartfelt effort helps City employee in need of new heart valve


At bat

Some big hearts pulled together
to help repair Shane Moore’s heart.

 

One hundred of them, in fact, many of them City workers. It was a team effort. Literally.

 

Water Resources Meter Services Division Manager Brandon Buckner considers Shane something like a kid brother. He even has a nickname for the younger meter technician: Buck. That’s because Shane started with the City seven years ago when he was only 20 — a “young buck,” as it were. The two bonded over the years.

“He’s one of the hardest workers you’ve ever met in your life,” Brandon says of Shane.

 

But the hard-working Shane was born with a defective heart valve, causing his heart muscle to enlarge. The valve was spewing half of the blood back into his heart. He needed open heart surgery to replace the valve. And he had to travel to Duke Medical Center to get it done.

Even with City health insurance, the cost would be burdensome to his family.

 

Shane and Brandon have played on the Dirt Dogs softball team together since 2013. That gave Brandon an idea. He worked with Shane’s wife Alisa, family, co-workers and volunteers to pull together a softball tournament to raise money to help with Shane’s expenses. About 20 City employees volunteered and participated.

 

On June 4, eight teams converged upon the Montford and Martin Luther King Jr. Recreation Complex ballfields to play 16 games for the Shane Moore Benefit Softball Tournament. It was an all-day event made possible by the help of volunteer umpires, field rangers, concession donations and hardworking volunteers. Brandon’s wife Rachell and Shane’s wife Alisha teamed up to help keep the event organized, running between the two fields, filling in where needed.

Robert Barrett, head of umpires association for softball league, got six umpires to volunteer for the day.  Bernard McDowell of the City’s Stormwater Services Division also volunteered his time to be one of the two field rangers.

Volunteers ran the concession stand, Pepsi donated drinks.

“There was a great sense of community for our organization,” Brandon said. “Everyone had that sense of taking care of one of our own.”

“You had people donating who didn’t even play.”

 

Shane was there too, just days before his surgery. “It was amazing how many people helped out,” he said. “It was quite something. I didn’t think there would be that good of a turnout.”

The games started at 8 a.m. The last one finished at 8 p.m. in what Brandon views as one of the most well organized softball tournaments he has ever attended, in large part to Alisha and Rachell’s dedication. Everyone stayed on schedule. People were focused, with a sense of purpose.

And then there came a truly winning moment.

At the end of the tournament, members of both teams in the championship game, knelt down on the field and prayed for Shane Moore. The winning team, Carolina Ice, was awarded their entry fee back for winning the tournament. They, in turn, graciously turned around and donated the money back to Shane.

 

At the end of the Shane Moore Benefit Softball Tournament, players knelt down on the field and prayed for Shane Moore.

At the end of the Shane Moore Benefit Softball Tournament, players knelt down on the field and prayed for Shane.

 

When the dust settled $1,515 had been raised that day including entry fees, concessions and prizes. They even sold T-shirts.

Shane underwent successful heart surgery on June 9. He was up and walking by June 11. He’s home recuperating now and hopes to be back to work sometime in August.

“They put a new valve in there and I should be fine,” he said. The valve will have to be replaced in 10-15 years. “I love everything now,” he added. “I truly have a new lease on life.”

 

Shane Moore is on the mend after his July 11 heart surgery.

Shane Moore is on the mend after his June 9 heart surgery.

 

Though his boss, Brandon Buckner helped to organize the benefit tournament, he said a lot of people made that day work. “When the community gets a sense of purpose it gets the ball rolling, everyone comes together,” Brandon said.

Still, Brandon did it for his buddy “Buck.”

“I just can’t wait for him to get back to work,” he said.

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