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Trade jewels in for health

first_imgThe theme was no grand leap for a man with stellar pirate bona fides. A tattoo that reads “Yo ho, yo ho, it’s a pirate’s life for me” is hidden from clients who visit his Granada Hills office, but a skull-and-crossbones on his desk is not. At Duncan’s Bridgeport home, a convincing life-size figure aptly named Cutthroat Bill is posed charging up a rope suspended in a lofty stairwell. Bill’s mateys, Pete and Capt. Hook, are in the dining room. The home’s decor is plank wood floors, dark shutters and faux stone archways. Duncan’s business partner, Harry Geozian, recently came back from Charleston, S.C., with the gift of a pirate hat. The drive to fund hospital services stems from long hours spent commuting to see his wife, Kathy, who was hospitalized and undergoing cancer treatment outside the valley. “We had to go to Northridge Hospital (Medical Center) and UCLA, that’s the whole reason I got involved with the charity,” he said. “I think it’s important we have a hospital (here) that can take care of every aspect of health issues.” All the while Duncan worked and cared for the couple’s two children, now 19 and 21. Kathy, who died from the illness, also underwent treatment at Newhall Memorial, which offers surgery, radiation, including tomotherapy, and chemotherapy, and is affiliated with numerous specialty groups. Geozian said his partner’s humor eased Kathy’s sadness when her long blond hair shed from chemotherapy. “He shaved his head,” Geozian said. “He made it less painful for her. He cared less about how he looked and about what people thought of him and more about making her … happy, less sad.” Jewelry may be dropped off at Newhall Memorial’s Foundation Office through the end of April, and Duncan will be present this Friday from noon to 3 p.m. The auction at the Frontier Toyota-Henry Mayo “Drive Safe” Golf Classic netted $55,000 last year and organizers are aiming for $65,000 this year, said Chris Luechtefeld, co-chairman of the event. Last year’s proceeds from the entire tournament totalled $287,000, and Luechtefeld’s goal is to raise $380,000 this year. The 180 slots for participants are almost sold out. For further information call the Newhall Memorial Health Foundation office at (661) 253-8082. [email protected] (661) 257-5255160Want local news?Sign up for the Localist and stay informed Something went wrong. Please try again.subscribeCongratulations! You’re all set! AD Quality Auto 360p 720p 1080p Top articles1/5READ MOREOregon Ducks football players get stuck on Disney ride during Rose Bowl eventA spokeswoman for a jewelry trade group in New York applauded his ingenuity. “I think that sounds like a wonderful idea, it’s basically recycling the jewelry,” said Colleen Mathis, of the nonprofit Jewelry Information Center. “It’s bringing new light to peoples’ eyes as far as the jewelry’s concerned.” Gold was selling for $600 an ounce last Thursday, according to a San Fernando Valley outlet that buys coins and jewelry. Values per ounce vary based on purity, with 24-carat items ranking at the top, 10-carat at the bottom. The hospital cannot afford to provide appraisals for inexpensive items, but would consider doing so for costlier ones. Those wishing to claim a charitable contribution on a tax return would need to submit a 1040 tax form with a Schedule A for itemized deductions, said Victor Omelczenko, an Internal Revenue Service spokesman. SANTA CLARITA – A benevolent pirate enthusiast hopes to parlay his penchant for booty into helping sick people get well. Racking his brain for new ways to raise money for a local hospital charity event, Steven Duncan devised a plan: Get people to donate unwearable jewelry languishing in a jewelry box, convert it into cash, buy one exquisite item and auction it off. “A lot of people have old jewelry, a pinkie ring from the ’70s, an earring you lost the mate to,” said Steven Duncan, a mortgage broker who has a pirate tattoo, a skull-and-crossbones on his desk and a home decorated with pirate regalia. “It is a way for people in the Santa Clarita Valley who have a family member who benefitted from the hospital to give back.” Money raised at the 33rd annual charity golf tournament and auction slated for May 20 at the Valencia Country Club will help fund trauma and emergency services at Henry Mayo Newhall Memorial Hospital. last_img read more