Local businesses to host charity breakfast in honor of late colleague

Submitted by Abigail Hart
Updated 12/10/2019 2:12 PM

Ben Cohen, a senior vice president of mortgage lending at Guaranteed Rate, is partnering with @properites real estate broker Susan Brown Burklin to host a charity breakfast, "French Toast of Love," in honor of their late colleague and friend Barb Hondros.

Hondros, a Highland Park resident, passed away in 2018 from kidney cancer at the age of 56. She worked as a real estate agent with @properties and was a beloved, active member of the community.


The event will be from 1-3 p.m. Dec. 15 at Sandy's Restaurant in Highwood and will benefit Lemons of Love in Barb's memory. Lemons of Love, which was Barb's favored charity, is a 501(c)3 nonprofit organization that sends care packages to cancer patients undergoing chemotherapy.

"Barb has left an incredible impact on everyone who knew her and truly made this community a better place," Cohen said. "Hosting an event to raise money for a charity she championed is just one way we can continue her loving and charitable legacy."

For a $10 cash donation guests will enjoy French toast, bacon or sausage and coffee along with goody bags and raffles provided by local retailers.

"Seeing such an outpouring of support from the community after Barb's passing has been inspiring," Brown Burklin said. "Ben and I are organizing this breakfast as a way to continue bringing the community who loved her together in honor of her life and to support a cause close to her heart."

Lemons of Love was created in 2014 when founder Jill Swanson Peltier was diagnosed with Stage III colon cancer. As she began chemotherapy, a friend gave Jill a small goody bag filled with items to help her through treatment.

Touched by the kindness and thoughtfulness of this gift, she knew this was something every cancer patient should receive. Jill envisioned giving others the same kind of love and support with a simple gift that makes a big impact.

Today, Lemons of Love shares chemo care packages with cancer patients around the world and provides programming at its Lemons of Love Cancer Resource Center in Mount Prospect.

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