On April 14, Danny Hanson, better known as Bunga, was diagnosed with pancreatic cancer which is now in his liver, says lifetime neighbour and friend, Donna Huphman.
“They said that he has one to four months depending on treatment, which we are waiting for,” says Huphman.
Hanson has been unwell for awhile, says Huphman, having lost his leg from the knee down to diabetes. Hanson now has an artificial leg and was just starting to do well, when he started losing weight so the doctor sent him for a scan, resulting in the cancer diagnosis.
Hanson doesn't want to leave a bunch of funeral expenses for his two boys, says Huphman, and wants to leave this world knowing most of his funeral is paid for. To help him make his wish come true, the community is rallying together on May 19 for a fundraising event at the Liverpool fire hall.
Huphman is more than happy to put this event together for the family, as she’s always had a soft spot in her heart for Hanson.
“Forty-one years ago, Danny was the little boy next door,” says Huphman. “Our dog got loose, and I had small children, so I knew I couldn't go after our dog and the next thing I see is Danny and his cousin Lenny coming with our dog, and from that day on Danny's always held a special place in my heart.”
Hanson is one of the friendliest men there is, says Huphman, always willing to give a helping hand to anyone who needs it, and speaks to whomever he sees on the street.
When asked how Hanson ended up with the nickname Bugna, Huphman explains that one winter’s day, a small Geo car ran into a ditch, and Danny lifted the car right out of the ditch. From then on, he was Bunga!
Hanson also loves driving in stock car races, and still has the wish to drive a stock car one last time. His brother-in-law is making this wish come true and Hanson will be racing May 13 at the Liverpool raceway if he's well enough to do so, explains Huphman.
Since he had his leg removed, Hanson hasn’t been able to work, but when he did, Huphman says he was a mechanic, a lobster fisherman, and worked many years as a labourer. Hanson is also a father to two sons, Jason and Gordon, and grandfather to three.
Huphman hopes the community will show up on May 19 to support this wonderful man with his final wish. The event begins at 5 p.m. with a bake sale and silent auction, followed by merchandise bingo at 7 p.m. The canteen will be open during all this.
“I know if Danny could help out anyone, he would,” says Huphman. “That's just how he is.”