This fall, two major manufacturers’ forums played host to some of the most heartwarming displays of generosity from strangers that we’ve seen recently.

Ernie Ball/Music Man
On August 12 at 9:12 a.m., one of Ernie Ball’s forum members, Erin Payne (a.k.a. stingray96191),made a postabout selling a special order DDII Big Al bass he had saved up to buy—one that hadn’t even come in the mail yet. The 25-year-old had been diagnosed with brain cancer, and his accumulating medical bills were forcing him to sell this and a few other basses he owned.

By 12:40 p.m. that same day, Sterling Ball had
stepped in with a challenge. He said that if the forums could raise the $2400 Erin needed to pay his bills and keep his basses, he would give him the Big Al at no charge. Sterling put the first $100 in and the special PayPal account hit its goal in less than six hours.

The generosity of forum members didn’t stop there; and 12 days later, the grand total was just under $9000. Erin is currently in recovery and gigging with the DDII Big Al bass he almost sold.

Seymour Duncan
Over on Seymour Duncan’s forums, forum member Lewguitar was similarly struggling with the expenses of cancer. After selling most of his guitar collection to pay for his insurance deductible and premiums, he learned that his insurance company stopped covering the Rocky Mountain Cancer Center he had been receiving treatment with, and he would have to foot the full cost to continue with his doctors beginning in January.

Again, the forum started pouring out support. As mentioned in our “On/Off/Standby” section last month, another forum member (Newking) won a custom guitar setup by Jol Danzig and pickup replacements from Seymour Duncan and donated it to Lewguitar.

Forum member sosomethingbegan a PayPal fundfor Lew on October 19, BigJoe77 began abenefit auction of his gear, and ratherdashingoffered to mod and repair pedalsin exchange for donations to the fund. Forum members even set up a Facebook page to promote donations. As of press time, the forum had raised around $2000 for Lew’s medical expenses.