overcast clouds


Laguna Beach

 Volume 12, Issue 85  |  October 23, 2020

Returning the love

By Marion Jacobs and Donna Moore

A lot of you know Jim Semple, that lovely local man with the Scottish accent who sits behind the desk at Automobile Repair of Laguna Beach on the corner of Thalia and PCH. Jim and his wife Maggie are loved by everyone who knows them. Warm, caring, always going out of their way to help others in big and little ways, it seems especially sad that a horrendous medical situation has upended the lives of this special couple. 

Last March, Maggie was diagnosed with Stage 3 cancer of the jaw, tongue, and neck. Maggie has undergone many months of grueling medical treatments including removing the tumor in her jaw, skin grafts from her thighs, and removal of teeth. Radiation is next. The bills keep piling up for essential items not completely covered under their insurance plan. 

Returning the maggie

Click on photo for a larger image

Submitted photo

Maggie Semple

Those items include, but are not limited to, the reconstruction of her jaw, reconstruction of her face, reconstruction of her teeth, speech therapy, expensive face and neck guards for radiation therapy, transportation to her many medical appointments, and extensive ongoing nursing care. In addition, since she is not able to swallow and eat food, she relies on an expensive quality nutritional drink for her health and sustenance. Since taking this drink into her body is difficult, she has lost a lot of weight. All of that and then her doctor indicated that she won’t be able to have dental implants after they pulled teeth to allow for the jaw reconstruction since the radiation will cause the jaw to be too weak to hold them. 

The bills are devastating, way past anything the Semples can manage. Their life is shaken. We are both longtime customers and friends of Jim. When Donna found out what was happening, she said it was a “no brainer,” insisting that Jim allow her to put them on the GoFundMe fundraising site at the link here. 

Returning the jim

Click on photo for a larger image

Submitted photo

Jim Semple

At first Jim resisted, arguing it was not their Scottish way, but Donna’s perseverance, and the reality of their financial situation won the day. Talk about warp speed, Donna set up the site and sent over 100 emails and texts to get help. Other big hearts heard the call and money began coming in. As of this writing three days later, there’s $5,280 in the fund! As marvelous as that is, we must keep pushing towards $20,000, and that may not be enough over the long haul.

Can you help by donating to this effort? We would be so grateful. Whatever you can afford is just fine. To donate, click here.

This beautiful statement Jim wrote to Donna tells you what kind of person he is. Let Jim thank you in his own words: “Just thinking that along with every setback (and there have been many), there has been an equal or greater instance of love and selflessness from our friends and neighbors who have also now become our loved ones. We are way ahead of the game! We can’t do it without you! Thank you all so very much. Jim and Maggie.”


Shaena Stabler is the Owner, Publisher & Editor.

Dianne Russell is our Associate Editor & Writer.

Michael Sterling is our Webmaster & Designer.

Mary Hurlbut and Scott Brashier are our photographers.

Alexis Amaradio, Barbara Diamond, Dennis McTighe, Diane Armitage, Marrie Stone, Maggi Henrikson, Samantha Washer, Stacia Stabler and Suzie Harrison are our writers and/or columnists.

We all love Laguna and we love what we do.

Email: [email protected] for questions about advertising


Email: [email protected] with news releases, letters, etc.


© 2020 Stu News Laguna - All Rights Reserved.