John and Eunice dance to Edelweiss at the Black and Pink Ball.
John Botsford is a Vietnam Veteran battling serious illnesses, including stage-four bone cancer. In December, John and his special lady, Eunice Sheberl, were invited by friends to attend the Mid-Day Women’s Alliance Black & Pink Ball in Menasha.
“When Eunice and I walked into that ballroom, we thought we were just going out dancing for the evening. We had no idea what was about to happen”, smiled John.
You see, John’s 20-year dream was to dance with Eunice at the Hofburg Palace in Vienna, Austria on New Years Eve, so John’s friends surpris
John and Terry at TC Dance Club before the trip.
ed him by arranging a special spotlight dance to selections from his favorite musical, “The Sound of Music”. As they danced, the room fell silent and tears of joy streamed down John’s face. The audience cried with him.
When Terry Irwin, owner of TC Dance Club International witnessed John and Eunice’s dance and heard John’s story, he knew he had to do something to make John’s dream come true for real and get them to Vienna by New Year’s Eve. “It just pulled at my heart strings”, said Terry.
John and Eunice at the Ball!
Terry followed through with his quest. Terry Irwin, along with the media and hundreds of community members came together to make John’s dream come true.
John and Eunice traveled to Vienna, Austria with stops in Amsterdam, Munich, and Salzburg. They visited grand cathedrals, castles, saw the Lipizzan Stallions dance, heard the Vienna Boy’s Choir, and more.
Then, on New Year’s Eve, John and Eunice dined and danced in their finest along with thousands and met people from all over the world. Just before Midnight, the countdown began, the Palace bells rang out with gusto, and the orchestra played the Blue Danube Waltz. They hardly noticed the champagne being poured as silver streamers fell from the ceiling and enveloped them on the dance floor as their dream came true.
John’s ascot was hand made by Eunice. His pin is a skating pin that they won in a competition. These details were conversation starters at the Ball!
John eyes misted as he said, “I’ve always been strong and able to help others and now I’m having to get used to accepting help from others. Eunice and I are so blessed. Thank you, Terry Irwin, and everyone who helped make our dream come true.”
Thank you to the media in our region that helped us get the word out about the fundraising campaign. You can read more about John and his story by clicking the following links.