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Front Page Photo of the Day Log-IN About us February 21, 2016
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In Loving Memory of Abby Schaefer
(MyBayCity Photo by John Keuvelaar)

Tragedy Brings Out the Best In The Community

McLaren Bay Regional raises funds for the Abby Schaefer family

February 21, 2016       Leave a Comment
By: John Keuvelaar

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The critical care unit of McLaren Bay Regional Hospital handles trauma and tragedy on a daily basis. But when tragedy hit one of their own, Taren Socier knew it was time to do more. Sharing her idea of a luncheon and bake sale fundraiser, the idea quickly caught on and the whole CCU was on board.

People lined up for the Taco Lunch.
(MyBayCity Photo by John Keuvelaar)

Abby Schaefer is the beautiful daughter of Ben and Jessica Schaefer. On January 22, 2016, Abby was struck by a vehicle when leaving a basketball game she just participated in as a cheerleader for her team. Abby later passed away from those injuries. Even in the midst of this unthinkable loss, Ben and Jessica thought of others as they allowed Abby to live on through others with the gift of organ donation.

People came in droves to dine in supporting the Schaefer family.
(MyBayCity Photo by John Keuvelaar)

The CCU quickly mobilized forming "Teams" to handle the various tasks associated with putting on such an event. Soon other departments like radiology, physicians and the pharmacy to name a few stepped forward to handle the costs of putting on the event. The departments donated the food, water and various items for the auction gift baskets to make it all work. Having posted the event on the community events section of Facebook, businesses and interested friends came forward donating items and money to make this a very successful event.

Several items were donated for the Ticket Raffle.
(MyBayCity Photo by John Keuvelaar)

Countless number of items were donated to the Silent Auction.
(MyBayCity Photo by John Keuvelaar)

Raffle Table showing the different ticket amounts you could buy.
(MyBayCity Photo by John Keuvelaar)

But it was the community, the strangers, which really caught Taren by surprise. "This morning we had a lady come in with her arms actually full of dozens of baked goods items for us," noted a surprised and happy Taren Socier. She noted a man who they didn't know helping as well as many other stories of the kindness of strangers who stepped forward to offer baked goods, auction items or other such helpful donations. The outpouring was more than I could write down.

Large amount of baked goods were donated for the Taco Lunch and Bake sale.
(MyBayCity Photo by John Keuvelaar)

The CCU split into teams to work the different parts of the luncheon.
(MyBayCity Photo by John Keuvelaar)

The CCU helped to make this lunch a reality.
(MyBayCity Photo by John Keuvelaar)

There was a steady flow of people who attended the event. With unseasonably warm weather helping get people out, it was a welcome sight. A tear-jerking moment came with we asked all the workers present to assemble for a group picture. McLaren workers and their daughters all flooded the stage to show their love and support for the Schaefer family.

Nobody can replace the life of a little girl, or comfort enough the loss of a loved child. But the love and support shown by the good people of McLaren especially the Critical Care Unit and the people of our community are a good start. It's times like these that it is good to see that the Good Samaritan in all of us is still alive and well.

All in memory of Abby Schaefer.
(MyBayCity Photo by John Keuvelaar)

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John Keuvelaar

John Keuvelaar is a college student at Midwest Photography Workshops and Delta College.

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