Saturday event at VFW to remember, raise funds for Fridley family killed in crash
'An Evening with Andre' will honor a Fridley woman and her two sons, who died in a December crash with a driver fleeing the State Patrol.
Six weeks after a crash that took the lives of three Fridley residents, friends and others in the community will gather Saturday evening to remember and raise funds for the family.
"An Evening for Andre," 4–10 p.m. on Jan. 22 at Fridley's VFW Post 363, is "a celebration of life," according to organizer Doug Westholter.
Andre Mack, 12, died on Dec. 5 along with his mother, Amanda Thomas, and his infant brother, Akeron Thomas, when a driver fleeing the State Patrol crashed into their car in north Minneapolis.
Saturday's event will feature sloppy Joes and other food, games, entertainment and a raffle, Westholter said.Among the raffle prizes are diamond earrings, a North woods weekend vacation for two, auto-detailing packages, a Blu-ray player with movies, and signed photographs of the Minnesota Wild hockey team.
Rock N Roll John, a "karaoke jockey," will lead the musical entertainment from 4–7 p.m. Fridley Middle School students the stage next with a Michael Jackson impersonator and a quiz game, "Are You Sharper Than a Fridley Middle Schooler?" Mother Earth, a band with members from Spring Lake Park High School, will round out the evening's entertainment.
Money raised from the $5 admission fee and $5 raffle tickets will pay for the family's remaining funeral expenses and headstones, Westholter said, and will help establish a scholarship fund for students from R.L. Stevenson Elementary. Anyone wishing to donate to the fund may do so via the Wells Fargo Bank at 6315 University Ave. NE, Fridley, MN 55432.
Westholter said he knew Mack as a friend of Westholter's grandson, Noah, at Fridley Middle School and R.L. Stevenson Elementary, where Westholter is a substitute teacher's aide.
"He was an awesome young man," Westholter said of Mack.