Family concert to benefit injured teens

Published 12:00 am Wednesday, February 3, 2010

There are moments in your life that will be forever present in your mind.

One of those moments happened for me on New Year’s morning when I received a phone call from a friend with the news that five of my daughter’s classmates at Trinity had been in a tragic car accident.

Having to wake her and her close friend up with this news was the hardest thing I have ever done. Thankfully, all of the children made it through alive.

Three of the children will fully recover. Two of these children, however, have a long road ahead of them.

Both Dylan Pressgrove and Matthew Rymer are at Methodist Rehabilitation Center in Jackson fighting daily to make baby steps toward recovery and a future for themselves.

Right away, I knew how I could cope with this tragedy — be a part of organizing and marketing the fundraising efforts for these kids.

When a small group of parents, students and friends first began our efforts, the goal was to raise money for all five of these kids. The Strickland, Scudiero and Newman families graciously and generously decided to decline any money raised.

It was their wishes for any funds raised to go for the benefit of Dylan and Matthew. They felt that the needs of these two boys were so much greater than their children’s needs.

At our first meeting, everyone present wanted to see something good come from a tragic situation.

“Unity for Strength” quickly became the campaign name when Yolanda White spoke of the Bible verse, Psalms 133:1, “How good and how pleasant it is for brethren to dwell together in unity!”

God does not make bad things happen, but when they do, it is his hope that we come together to make good come out of the bad. I have seen the “good” come out of this tragedy with the prayers, generosity, and support of so many for these two families.

I have seen kids from all local schools and people from all walks of life unite for this cause.

We have had great success with several fundraisers thanks to the generosity and hard work of many people.

The biggest fundraiser to date, however, will take place this Saturday night at the Natchez City Auditorium.

Our thanks go out to the Chuck Borum family and Riley at Q93 for putting so much time and effort into organizing a five-band concert.

As her heart truly goes out to these boys, Riley at Q93 plans to take a video of the concert with T-shirts signed by the bands to Matthew and Dylan.

This concert is a family friendly event for all ages. There will be no alcohol served or allowed. Concessions will be available.

Tickets can be purchased at Trinity, Cathedral, ACCS and at the door. T-shirts and arm bands will also be available for purchase.

Not only can you support a great cause, but you can rock out with five talented local bands.

The Unity For Strength Benefit Concert will be at 6 p.m. Saturday at the Natchez City Auditorium. Doors will open at 5:30 p.m. Tickets are $10.

Bands Wayside, Minus 300, Five Star Fiasco, Alter’d and Social Recall will perform.

Plan to join us Saturday night for this family friendly concert as we all unite for strength to support these two families in our community. Show these two boys as a community that we care!

Sarah Smith is a Trinity parent and organizer of the concert.