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Be a Deer & Give a Shit

Organized by: Jonel Beach

Jonel's Photo

THE STORY:

Ray was my favorite human. He was my hero - in theory and in practice. He took care of everyone in his world. From the time I was little, he was saving me from ridiculous situations and would then treat me like a normal human the very next minute... and in his world, it meant sarcastic and torturous amounts of teasing.

He had three sons. And those boys were always first in his world, no matter what. His second son, Logan was diagnosed with Autism, juvenile diabetes, asthma and has seizures of unknown origin from time to time. Life was excruciating sometimes. Even after decades of sleep deprivation, impossible situations, dealing with a public full of ignorant stares and snickerings, and the hardest work you could ever imagine... the last time I had a heart to heart with Ray, he still raved about how much he loved his boys. He was in awe of my aunt Penny for her tireless efforts in the world of government red tape and healthy choice making. And he said there wasn't anything he wouldn't give to take Logan's suffering as his own.

Despite everything, he managed to make us all laugh. He was wickedly smart -- and even more hilarious than he was intelligent. And in those rare moments he stole time for himself, he enjoyed his hobbies. Hobbies that were once lifestyles that he identified with deeply. But in the last number of years, they were so few and so far between... but in those moments, everything evaporated.

Caving and other mountain adventures with his family and best friend Frank.
Stirring up trouble anywhere he went with his non-sexual soulmate Bartman.
Racing his Volvo with the Rocky Mountain Volvo Club of America.
Catching all things comedy with each of us.
And music. Music was his heart, his escape, his shoulder to cry on, his return to youth.

He was alive because of his wife, his boys, his dear friends and these passions that temporarily completed him.

Depression creeps. Ray fought harder than most. He never faltered. He never drank. He did everything by the book - as he saw it. He was a hero in every way. But he never learned to quiet that voice. To feed his soul. Or to love himself. 51 years without help, without self care, without granting himself permission to feel.... is a miracle in my mind.

His suicide is the deepest tragedy I have ever known. And it is a reminder to us all that we must attend to ourselves. A reason to revolt against the taboo and talk about his dirty secret. Suicide. That's a real thing. He was the most selfless man I know - and that is what led to his death. He couldn't sustain it. It's not anyone's fault. And it's too late to do anything to save him.

But we can turn it into something positive. We can shine some light on living with a disability. We can chisel away at that ignorant public. If everyone reading this can remember to look disabled people in the eyes, they'll find a human not so different from themselves. If everyone reading this remembers to express kindness toward a parent struggling with an out of control child, that struggle lessens. And if everyone here could invite three people they care about to call them if their thoughts turn dark... and mean it... we will save a ton of lives. And if everyone here could remember to build happiness skills and chase their passions (within reason), we can all live sustainable lives. And when shit gets too real, remember it's transient. It will pass. And with time, laughter is possible. Laugh, people. It's the fastest way to dry tears and connect with others.

"Laughter is the shortest distance between two people."
-Victor Borge

In memory of my uncle, I wanted to bring us together with some laughter. Yes, I firmly believe laughter can heal all pain - or at least help us share the burden in community. So, I gathered a group of the finest comedians this town has ever seen... as my thank you to everyone who cares enough to pay tribute to my hero, my fellow black sheep, my comedic friend.

Thank you all for helping with a cause we feel so passionate about in my family. The HighPointe Center has been nothing shy of a godsend to my cousin Logan, to his friends, to his family and to me. They make magic happen with minuscule amounts of money. They do it with love, hope and devotion to the many people with developmental disabilities and acquired brain injuries in their care. It is one of the most overwhelmingly joyous places I have ever had the privilege of visiting in all of my life. Let's get them some more pennies to rub together!

Thank you, infinitely, for giving a shit. There has never been a cause more dear to my heart.

$585

 

23% Raised of $2,500 Goal

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  • Anonymous

    $100

  • Anonymous

    $200

  • Jessica Boston

    $50

  • Kevin

    $25

  • Steve & Geoff

    $100

  • D Michael

    $15

  • Chris & Sheri

    $50

  • Cam and Bec

    $30

  • Anonymous

    $15

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Organized by

Jonel Beach

This is a direct to organizer fundraiser.

Donor Comments

Anonymous

ANONYMOUS

DONATION: $15

4 years ago

Cam and Bec

Cam and Bec

DONATION: $30

Ray and to help his family 4 years ago

Chris & Sheri

Chris & Sheri

DONATION: $50

4 years ago

D Michael

D Michael

DONATION: $15

Thanks Jonel!! 4 years ago

Steve & Geoff

Steve & Geoff

DONATION: $100

Sorry we couldn't make it. We hope the event went very well! 4 years ago

Kevin

Kevin

DONATION: $25

Hi Jonel - So sorry I couldn't make it, but I'm hoping this donation helps a bit. Good luck in your new adventure! I'm sure you'll do great! 4 years ago

Jessica Boston

Jessica Boston

DONATION: $50

4 years ago

Anonymous

ANONYMOUS

DONATION: $200

4 years ago

Anonymous

ANONYMOUS

DONATION: $100

4 years ago

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