Community helping firefighter who's fighting cancer

Author: , Reporter, RHughes@wfmz.com
Published: Apr 27 2012 05:26:21 PM EDT   Updated On: Apr 27 2012 06:18:09 PM EDT
WYOMISSING, Pa. -

The Berks County community is rallying behind a local firefighter at a time when he and his family need it the most.

"God dealt me a curve ball. I'm just trying to figure out how to line up and knock the curve ball out of the park," said Ron Wentzel, a deputy chief with the Reading Fire Department.

Wentzel is better known as "Moose," and he is battling the fight of his life. He was recently diagnosed with an aggressive type of brain cancer, and his friends said he's been given only 10 to 12 months to live.

"We found out how serious it was, and being brain cancer and the time he has left on the face of this earth, I'm looking for a miracle," said Keith "Sarg" Eschleman, a good friend of "Moose."

"Moose" is also the assistant chief at the Western Berks Fire Department. Ever since his diagnosis, his friends started raising money to help pay for his medical bills. They reached out to the community in late February and have raised nearly $20,000. That's not including the $10,000 worth of items set to be auctioned off Friday night.

The Inn at Reading in Wyomissing will open its doors for casino night. It starts at 6 p.m. and will go until 1 a.m.

"The door is open. You're not doing anything on a Friday night, it's not so nice out, come on inside," said Eschleman.

They will auction off items like a signed Philadelphia Phillies jersey, Eagles tickets, and a flat screen TV. His friends are asking you to give back to a man who is determined to beat the odds.

"My goal is to get back in the car and be back to work," said Wentzel.