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Fundraiser set for son of Ceres business owner, police officer
An estimated 600 to 1,000 are expected to turn out for Saturday's spaghetti dinner fundraiser at a downtown Ceres diner to raise funds to cover medical bills incurred by the stepson of a Ceres police officer.

The dinner, set for 5 p.m. to 8 p.m. this Saturday at Sam's Café, 3052 Fifth Street, will raise funds for the family of Jordan Stilwell, 10, who fell seriously ill on Jan. 31. Jordan, who suffers from autism, was rushed to U.C. Davis Children's Hospital where he is recovering. His prognosis is unclear but the family's deductible for medical insurance is overwhelming. As of Tuesday Jordan was heavily sedated in the hospital, off of a respiratory and breathing on his own, but suffering from a blood infection and blood clot.

"We won't know the extent of the damage to his pancreas and kidneys until they go in and do surgery," said Carrie Smith, a spokesperson for the family who is helping to organize Saturday's event.

Jordan is the son of Oakdale Police Officer Don Stilwell, and Sherrill and Brian Petersen. Brian Peterson is a Ceres police officer and Sherrill is the owner of the café. Jordan attends school at Christine Sipherd School in Modesto.

The event will feature a bake sale and silent auction for donated items and will be set up for outdoor seating and heating on a closed-down portion of Fifth Street, said Smith. The event will also include a country western band and face painting.

Tickets are $10 per person if purchased in advance at Ceres Police Department, Ceres Fire Station #1, Oakdale Police Department or at Sam's Café. Tickets will be sold at the door for $12 apiece.

The public may also donate to the Jordan Stilwell Benefit Fund (account #029606178) which has been established at Bank of the West on Whitmore Avenue in Ceres. The bank may be reached at (800) 488-2265.

For more information, contact Carrie Smith 872-5434.