SPRINGFIELD, Mo. — Strangers are helping a Missouri couple with critical cancer treatment, thanks to "crowdfunding".
Many people use Web sites like Kickstarter to pitch in funds for projects, but experts say it's new to use such projects for hospital bills.
Amy Blansit's husband, Drew Lewis, is battling stage 4 colon cancer. He's scheduled for a second surgery on Friday at the Cleveland Clinic in Ohio - and insurance has declined to help pay the $400,000 bill.
"I want to have a big sign for him to see when he wakes up to remind him it's been ten months and a long battle but it's all been worth it," she tells Springfield's KSPR.
So far, more than 1,250 people are following a Facebook page to keep informed about Drew and his diagnosis.
"This is new for me, it's all new," says Vanessa Howe, a friend of the family. With help, she's been using the Facebook page to encourage people to donate to an account at a Springfield bank.
"Within the first day we probably had 15 people say they went and did," says Howe of contributions to the account.
Amy Blansit's sister is also crowdfunding -- she set up an account at giveforward.com for Drew. The site has raised nearly $27 million for mostly medical causes.
Drew's surgery is Friday ,and Amy hopes after about two more weeks of recovering in Cleveland, they'll be able to come home to Springfield -- just in time for Christmas.