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Wings Over Muskegon

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Monday, December 9, 2019

Giving Back Christmas 2019 - Sunday December 15th at the VFW on Apple Ave in Muskegon

There are key moments in life where you will most likely never forget where you were when it happened.  Maybe it was a historic event, maybe it was the birth of a child or the news of the loss of a parent.  No matter, the who or what...the "where" seems to stand out to all of us for one reason or another, and the "where" in the case of Positively Muskegon will always be tied to the "She Shed" of Andrea Rosema, and her event called "Giving Back Christmas"

It was just a fledgling idea without a lot of direction, this blog and my whopping crew of no one except me, and a GoPro camera.  I had just come off a couple years of some less than adequate job experiences which really left me up against the wall.  I'd get out of the 9-5 job and hope I could get home early enough to try and get the paperwork in to the bank to keep my house, because $10 bucks an hour just can't make it happen.  I had left the only thing I did as an adult, radio, on principle a couple years earlier.  I really enjoyed the NASCAR job I left it for, but when that dried up and I came back to work...finding something to do wasn't all that easy and finding someone who understood the purpose behind what I wanted to do as opposed to how much money they could grab as fast as they could grab it.  I was heading for a wall...and fast.  I had a blog program I knew was free and I had to ask the wife to use the Best Buy card to buy the cheapest camera I could find....6 months same as cash.  I needed a little direction in the whole thing and from out of nowhere, popped up Andrea Rosema.
Follow Giving Back Christmas on Facebook

She was putting on a party for kids.  It was a fun day for kids and families at the VFW on Apple filled with cookie decorating, letters and cards to soldiers, snacks, giveaways, music and fun.  There were a handful of friends pitching in and a few sponsors that gave her some things to give away...it was Andrea's chance to put a little something good back in the world, and my introduction to the infamous "She Shed".

We sat huddled around that GoPro, 4 or 5 us us.  It was FREEZING but as we talked everything fell into place.  While I had been a part of some of the largest and most detailed events you can imagine...this was the biggest thing Andrea and her friends do every year and my role in it....give them the floor!  Help them spread the word.  Show the world just how awesome every corner of Muskegon is and how vital Andrea and everyone like her are to making sure that we chug along no matter what we are facing.

So much has happened since.  Yes, Muskegon is in much better shape.  Yes, we've grown a little.  Yes, the "she shed" is still freezing and YES!  Andrea is still at it and you are still invited to bring the kids out for a great gathering this Sunday from 1p-5p to the VFW 7729 at 6285 E. Apple Ave for some holiday cheer and fun.  The list of things to do is long and it's FREE for anyone to attend!

Andrea and I met up in the "she shed" once again and had our yearly visit....where it all began!

Remembering your roots, well, it's kind of a big deal to us.  To know we grew to what we are today from one request from a mom wanting to show her kids, and the neighbor kids BY EXAMPLE what it is to take care of your community....we'll forever br grateful to Andrea and her squad.  As long as she'll have us...we'll keep going back to help spread the word.  Positively Muskegon's heart and soul lies within Andrea...and people like her.  We are ever so thankful for all who have helped us along the way.

For a real treat, click on picture below....it will take you back to our first visit with Andrea and friends.....where it all began.

Friday, December 6, 2019

The Tommy Davis Memorial Fund - Tragedy Brings Triumph To Muskegon

If you remember back a little, about a year an a half ago an isolated but remarkably scary incident happened right in the heart of Downtown Muskegon that left all of us in utter shock, two families devastated and lives forever changed in the blink of an eye.  We don't ever claim to be a perfect community, but when we lose people to acts of rage and violence anywhere it's sorrowful for all of us and we all continue to ask why?

That question of why is the haunting that will follow the ones closest to the victims for the remainder of their lives.  Why can also leave a pretty big cloud in the mind of those who are trying to remember the great things and memories of those who were lost.  What made them who they are?  What were their passions?  What light did they bring to the world and since it was taken away, should that light be forever extinguished or, should those who remember carry on with what they loved?  There really is no right or wrong answer, everyone grieves in their own way, but for the Davis family who lost their son and brother Tommy, a big part of their healing is not only remembering Tommy, but honoring his memory by carrying out who he was, what he loved and supporting the community he was so proud to call home, Muskegon.

Tommy was a Mona Shores graduate.  He LOVED basketball.  When he completed his education he went to work at Mercy Health so he could continue his love for his community and help those who needed a hand and he loved his friends and family.  One thing was more than clear in talking to his mom and brother...above all, his love for Muskegon was undeniable.
Tommy Davis Memorial Fund On Facebook

After the family had a little time, they decided that what Tommy brought to the world was more than could be let go.  So, they got themselves in the position to form a non profit organization to continue the memory of Tommy and to help that memory live on by supporting the things he loved!  Basketball...let's set up a camp for K-6th grade to learn some skills and send them home with a basketball of their own and some other goodies.  The $10 registration fee for the camp?  Went right back to the basketball team at the school for their assistance in helping at the camp.  Food.  We all know that there are so many in Muskegon who are "food insecure".  Let's get a food truck out here and feed 181 family members in remembrance.  Leftovers?  Muskegon Rescue Mission got them!  In fact the food truck was so big and proved to have such an impact they are doing another on on December 19th at Nexxes Realty on Broadway in Roosevelt Park on December 19th.  It's the very beginnings of exactly how we do things in Muskegon.  It's friends and family leading by example and refusing to let someone's memory fade or good they brought into the world go away because of one violent act.  This is how Muskegon builds community and it's a story we just love to tell.

I met up with Sherri and Eric Davis to learn more about Tommy and to find out how they are working, day in and day out to keep his light shining and to make sure that his love for Muskegon carries on even though he's not here any more.  It's a pretty touching conversation with a couple of truly remarkable people.  Take a listen.

What a gift it is to all of us to know that the strength and hope we have in our community is alive and well in people like the Davis family.  This was not the easiest thing for them to do, and it's more than understandable....but to be a gift....in the face of loss...that is where true strength lies and that is were hope abounds.  They never planned to be in this role, but to let the memory of their son and brother fade over the acts of another...that wasn't really in the plan either.  Our most sincere thanks to the Davis family for coming on to tell their story and know, that we'll be following what goes on as their outreach grows over time.  Do you wonder where miracles come from?  They come from Muskegon Michigan and they come from families like Tommys'.

Please, click on the photo below and follow their website for more information on how you can help.