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Community Outpouring For Alex Mack Shows Spirit Of Pasadena

Dylan Roche
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July 21, 2011

Critically Injured Youth Making Progress

By Ellen Kinsella

“Anyone can feel the ache

You think it’s more than you can take

But you're stronger, stronger than you know

Don’t you give up now

The sun will soon be shining

You gotta face the clouds

To find the silver lining”

“What Faith Can Do” by Kutless, posted on Alex’s Caring Bridge page.

The sea of love for Alex Mack has washed over his family like a soothing balm. Mack, age 20, a 2009 graduate of Chesapeake High School, was involved in a serious car accident on June 26 while traveling from work. He was flown to University of Maryland Shock Trauma Center in Baltimore, where he stayed in the Critical Care Unit, suffering from injuries to his head and the right side of his body. He underwent surgery to relieve pressure on his brain, and was kept under medical sedation. When this article went to press, Alex was making slow, but positive, progress.

“Every day there has been stuff to fight through,” explained Liz Lupinek, Alex’s cousin. “He had brain surgery and then needed abdominal surgery to clear up an infection, and his sedation medication has to be adjusted frequently,” she said, adding, “Every day is a struggle.”

Alex’s mother, Colleen, and father, Vince, have been by his side faithfully, as have his sisters, Breeyn and Abby, sometimes ‘round the clock.

Alex wasn’t able to have outside visitors, but that didn’t stop the community from showing its love for him. An interfaith prayer service was held shortly after the accident at Our Lady of the Chesapeake Catholic Church, where Alex’s family attends. Prayers and concerns have poured from the community through the facebook page: Pray for Alex Mack, and the Caring Bridge website: www.caringbridge.org/visit/AlexMack. Fundraisers have been held at the Library, Ledo Pizza and the snack bar at Cedarwood Cove Pool, where Alex used to work, and more are planned.

On July 16, a fair called “Fight for A. Mack” was held at Chesapeake High School’s stadium, with the help of Athletic Director Chip Snyder, as well as family members and friends, to raise money for medical expenses and other costs the family will incur during Alex’s hospitalization.

In the “rasta” theme of “Jah Love,” which Alex loved, the event had music, food, raffles, corn hole, volleyball, a slip-n-slide, and much more. The games were competitive with the winning team paying up. Jordan Taylor Salon sold red, green, and yellow feather hair extensions. Gel wristbands, saying “Fight for Alex Mack,” were sold in the same three rasta colors, and orders were taken for “Jah Love” UnderArmour t-shirts.

Loretta Mack, Alex’s aunt, who helped organize the event, was shocked at the depth of support that was offered when the event snowballed into a huge affair. “What started out to be 50 or 60 kids turned into about 1,500,” she exclaimed. “Everyone is so kind-hearted… They’ve just wrapped my brother’s family in their arms!”

On Saturday, July 30, there will be a Run For Alex, with all donations going to the Alex Mack Trust Fund. This is a 5K run/1-mile walk, starting at Our Lady of the Chesapeake, 8325 Ventnor Road in Pasadena. Registration begins at 7:00am, the Run at 8:00am, and the Walk at 8:15. There will be a prize drawing, as well as prizes for the top male and top female finishers, sponsored by RoadID.

If you can't make the race but want to make a donation, visit the Active.com website. The Alexander V. Mack Trust will receive all funds raised. To donate directly to this fund, you may send a check payable to Alexander V. Mack Trust, and mail it to M&T Bank, 4157 Mountain Road, PMG-123, Pasadena, MD 21122.

Sunday, August 21 from 9:00am - 12:00pm, there will be a fundraiser breakfast at The Gathering Place (Our Lady of the Chesapeake), 8325 Ventnor Road, Pasadena.  The menu will include pancakes, sausage, scrambled eggs, sausage gravy and biscuits, coffee, hot tea, juice and milk as well as a baked goods table.  In addition there will be a Chinese Auction Table, and a Special Silent Auction.  Tickets are $5 per person.  To purchase tickets or make a donation please contact Rose Wilhite at wilhiter@comcast.net or Debbie Meeks at dfmeeks@comcast.net.  Checks are payable to Our Lady of the Chesapeake and in the memo section -  Alex V. Mack Trust Fund.

Saturday, August 27, from 8:00pm - 12:00 am, there will be a fundraiser at Our Lady of the Chesapeake Gathering Place, 8325 Ventnor Road, Pasadena.  This event will feature a live band - Mid Life Crisis (Vern Sousa), 50/50 raffles, and much more.  On the menu will be chicken wings, meatballs, pit beef sliders, crab dip, appetizers, desserts, beer, wine, soda, and bottled water. To order your tickets ($35 per person), call Lauren Smith at 410-255-8696, or email smithwoods@verizon.net.  Checks will be payable to the Alexander V. Mack Trust.  This is a 21-and-older event.  Raffle basket donations are currently being accepted.

The Mack family is very appreciative of the generosity of the community and wishes to say THANK YOU to each and every person who has made a contribution or said a prayer.

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