Niagara Gazette — Koban-Sortore is reluctant to be the guest of honor, but said she is amazed at all the support she’s received. “It’s unbelievable,” she said during a recent phone interview. “There’s a lot of goodness around me — such kindness and love.”
Because she stayed at her job as a court clerk for the Town of Lewiston — arranging her chemotherapy session around her court schedule — and resigned only last October, she won’t be able to collect disability until May.
Koban-Sortore has worked hard her entire life, according to her friends. Prior to her time in Lewiston courts, she worked for 17 years for the Fireman’s Credit Union, in an office at Niagara Falls City Hall. She also worked nearly her whole life at her family’s Niagara Street restaurant, Koban’s, which will be closed Friday so all its patrons can attend the fundraiser.
Due to the many roads Koban-Sortore has travelled, she seems to have accumulated a wealth of friendships among many different types of people, from her Lewiston neighbors to the parents at her children’s schools, to her fellow employees.
Those on the fundraising committee are amazed that so many people want to help Koban-Sortore. And yet, even if it were possible, they cannot walk in her shoes — she wouldn’t let them. “I told her ‘I wish could take one day from you,’” DiMino-Hepfer said. Her friend replied, “No, I would never allow it.”
While Koban-Sortore’s cancer has metastasized, doctors are hoping to keep it at bay. They are escalating her chemotherapy treatments and every few weeks, she must have water drained from her swelling midsection to make it easier for her to move, a procedure that costs a $150 every time. The mother of two admits to holding off each visit for as long as possible, to keep the costs down.