Girls’ lemonade stand boosts cancer battle

Laura Poulton, 17, of Westport, Sarah Lamothe, 17, and Abby Canto, 16, of Little Compton sell lemonade, baked goods and knitted items for a fundraiser to fight cancer. Laura Poulton, 17, of Westport, Sarah Lamothe, 17, and Abby Canto, 16, of Little Compton sell lemonade, baked goods and knitted items for a fundraiser to fight cancer.

Laura Poulton, 17, of Westport, Sarah Lamothe, 17, and Abby Canto, 16, of Little Compton sell lemonade, baked goods and knitted items for a fundraiser to fight cancer.

Laura Poulton, 17, of Westport, Sarah Lamothe, 17, and Abby Canto, 16, of Little Compton sell lemonade, baked goods and knitted items for a fundraiser to fight cancer.

Three girls and many generous lemonade customers raised more than $1,200 for the fight against cancer recently at a roadside stand in Tiverton.

In so doing, they again followed in the footsteps of Alexandra “Alex” Scott, a young cancer patient who, while in the hospital for treatment, vowed that once released she would she would open a lemonade stand to raise money. She followed through on her promise each year until her death at age 8.

That story so moved Sarah Lamothe, now 17, of Tiverton, that six years ago she started her own lemonade stand, donating all proceeds to the Alex’s Lemonade Stand Foundation.

Last year, she and friends raised $1,100 at their stand, putting them among the top en Alex’s Lemonade Stand participants in the country.

And this year, her sixth, she and two friends — Laura Poulton of Westport and Abby Canto of Little Compton — topped that effort by $100. The three all attend Amicable Congregational Church in Tiverton.

By now, the stand’s offerings out front of  Sarah’s father’s garage — Henry’s Motor Mart on Stafford Road — have gone far beyond lemonade and iced tea.

“They were up until late the two nights before baking,” said Sarah’s mother Joyce Lamothe, turning out brownies, applesauce cakes, garbage can cookies and more. Others contributed Portuguese sweet bread and other food for the table.

Sarah said she was especially grateful to the many people and businesses who helped out — with cooking, signs, and donations (one woman donated a dozen pocketbooks she had made herself).

Customers were especially generous, she said. One man pitched in $50 for his glass of lemonade; a New York visitor to Mr. Lamothe’s shop gave $40 — “and he has never met my daughter.”

Like most families, the three girls have their own family experiences with cancer — Sarah lost a grandmother and aunts, Abby lost her mother.

“They put so much effort into this,” Joyce Lamothe said. “It’s great to see it go so well.”

For more on the foundation, visit www.alexslemonade.org

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