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Mothers of Detained Hikers on the Way to Iran; Local Fundraiser Helps Cause

Monday, May 17th, 2010 at 5:30 am
Picture 359

C.J. Gustafson (left) presents Nora Shourd (middle) and Cindy Hickey (right) with one of the donation cans from the Mother's Day Fundraiser

The mothers of the three American Hikers detained in Iran are on their way to see their children for the first time since they were detained last July.  Cindy Hickey and Nora Shourd, who are living in Pine City, left from Minnesota Sunday and will spend a week in Iran hoping to return with their children Shane Bauer and Sarah Shourd.

Hickey and Shourd are wishing for the best, but preparing for the worst.

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Hickey and Shourd received an extra financial boost for their trip.  Over Mother’s Day weekend, area businesses donated a portion of their proceeds to the mothers, totaling around $850.  Owner of Sprouts Hometown Market and Gifts, C.J Gustafson, presented Hickey and Shourd with the donations during a small ceremony Saturday morning.

Shourd and Hickey say they are blown away by the local generosity.

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The mothers were granted visas last week.  Hickey says, even still, it’s not completely guaranteed that they will be able to see their children during the trip, although she says it is likely.

In April, a top Iranian intelligence minister linked  Bauer, Shourd, and Josh Fattal to American Intelligence.  The families of the Americans called the accusations “totally unfounded” and “ridiculous.”  They insist the three accidentally crossed the Iranian boarder while hiking in Iraq.

Reports from Iran indicate Bauer and Fattal are being held in the same cell, Shourd is in a cell by herself.  Bauer and Shourd are reportedly in poor health.

Hickey says the first words she will say to her son are “I love you.”  She adds that she and the other two mothers are bringing enthusiasm and love to their children.

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