Vernon Stephens Family Assistance Fund

$78,830 of $100k goal

Raised by 944 people in 32 months
Arin L. Johnson  JACKSONVILLE, FL
Vernon Maurice Stephens, a husband, father, son, brother, and friend passed away on Friday, April 11, 2014 in Jacksonville, Florida. He leaves behind a wife, Andrea, and two young children Skyla (10) and Vernon Campbell (6).

Vernon was heading to meet friends when his vehicle broke down on the Mathew's Bridge. Shortly after breaking down, Vernon's vehicle was struck and he was propelled over the railing and knocked into the water. After an intense search, family and friends from across the country gathered in an effort to search and show support scouring the St. Johns River hoping to find Vernon. Vernon's body was discovered by a fisherman at approximately 7:15 a.m. on Monday, April 14, 2014, three miles from the accident site.

Vernon, a graduate of Morehouse College in Atlanta and Andrea, a graduate of Auburn University and member of Zeta Phi Beta Sorority, Inc. would have celebrated 11 years of marriage on May 3, 2014. Over the last two years, Vernon has been the sole breadwinner for his household as his wife Andrea pursued a degree in nursing. She recently graduated Valedictorian of her class and had just started a new job one week prior to this unfortunate accident.

Vernon is an amazing father and his children adore him. The light from his smile is reflected in theirs, and his chest would burst with pride at even the smallest of achievements. Vernon consistently challenged his children to be better, do better, and think bigger. Through Skyla and Campbell (Camp as we call him) his legacy will continue because he has laid the foundations of self-awareness, family, kindness and community within them. Although they are sure to mourn the passing of their father we will not let his spirit fade.

We are asking for donations to help support Vernon's wife and children with funeral costs as well as any other financial needs. We thank you for your love and support.

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Update 5
Posted by Arin Johnson
31 months ago
Today we honor 11 years of marriage for Buffy and Vernon. In his absence, friends and family have come together in love and support to celebrate, laugh, comfort, and encourage. I love this family and I thank each and every person who has prayed for them, shared their story, and even donated. Going forward, I ask that you continue to keep them in your thoughts and pray for their strength as they press on. Have a blessed day! #buffyandvernon #est2003 #teamvernon
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Update 4
Posted by Arin Johnson
32 months ago
Please continue to share this story. As we entertain family and friends who have traveled to join us for Vernon's memorial, we are reminded that there will be several financial burdens they may to face. We ask that you help this amazing family.
Andrea speaks about Vernon to local news
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Update 3
Posted by Arin Johnson
32 months ago
Hello everyone, this is Daryll Paiva...

On behalf of the family and friends of Buffy, Vernon, Camp and Skyla....

THANK YOU... THANK YOU... THANK YOU!!!

How amazing is this! In only 48 hours the outpouring of love and support has allowed us to reach our initial goal. A true testament to the kind of person Vernon was and the kind of people you all are.

I don't think any of us could have imagined so much generosity, so much caring, so much love... and if any family was deserving of a blessing, it is the Stephens. They have touched so many lives in so many wonderful ways.

Our goal is simple"¦. to keep pressing forward. We will keep praying, keep hoping, and keep pushing for the continued love and overflow of generosity.

Last night, as I saw we were approaching our goal, my thoughts drifted to the taxes, the debts, the college funds, and even the small things like everyday expenses... I became overwhelmed and felt compelled to keep doing all I can to help spread the word. I want to ensure they can heal without this burden hanging over them. I am increasing the goal in hopes that people will continue to give from the heart. We are eternally grateful for any gift.

Once again, thank you so very much for all your kind words and generosity. You have helped more than you could ever know.

Eternally grateful,
Daryll Paiva
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Update 2
Posted by Arin Johnson
32 months ago
How amazing is it to see a community share so much love. There is no better feeling than being able to truly give. Never could I imagine, when we started this page, that so many people would share so much warmth, support and kindness. This is truly an amazing opportunity to show Vernon how much we all loved him, by ensuring his family will be okay in his absence. No one could be prepared for such a tragedy. I hope we can keep the momentum and drive this number through the roof with love.

Thank you all.. for all your efforts and generosity.
.
-Daryll Paiva
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Read a Previous Update
Help spread the word!
 4.2K total shares
Terri Evans
31 months ago

My thoughts and prayers go out to the family. Please know that the Spelman and Morehouse community are lifting you and your children up in prayer! Sincerely, TLE

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Najma Jamludeen
32 months ago

In the name of God Most Gracious Most Merciful 1.By the morning glory 2.And by the night when it is stillest 3.Thy Lord hath not forsaken thee, nor is is He displeased 4.And verily the hereafter will be better than the present 5.And verily thy Lord will give unto thee so that thou wilt be content 6.Did He not find thee an orphan and protect thee? 7.Did He not find thee wandering and direct thee? 8.Did He not find thee destitute and enrich thee? 9.Therefore the orphan oppress not 10.Therefore the beggar drive not away 11.Therefore the Bounty of thy Lord proclaim Quran Chapter 93- The Morning Glory

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Christiana Clark
32 months ago

I am so very sorry for your loss. I know these words probably sound so hollow and empty with what you are going through so please just know that I will pray for and your children. May God comfort you as only He can and may you feel His presence and His love and know that you are never alone.

+ Read More
Alana Kelly-Stewart
32 months ago

Felt compelled to donate again on today. I pray that God will continue to reside with this family during their time of sorrow.... RIP Mr. Stephens

+ Read More
Dawn Polley
32 months ago

My heart is with you family..

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C Anitra Cunningham
32 months ago

It's heart warming to see the amount giving taking place here. This family needs time to heal without the stress and burden of finances. Blessings to all the givers. May you be blessed one-hundred fold.

+ Read More
Nicole Story
32 months ago

So sorry to hear this tragic news - love and hugs to the children. Let me know if there is any way we can be of assistance to you.

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Jus Amanda
32 months ago

May God comfort you with his peaceful love in this time.

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Ebony Eyes
32 months ago

I will really miss you my friend...from the girl who gave you your first dance as college freshmen at club De Joule', even when you joked that you had two left feet!

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Beryl White-Bing
32 months ago

I will be donating on Friday. My condolences to the Family. My heart is breaking for them.

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$78,830 of $100k goal

Raised by 944 people in 32 months
Created April 14, 2014
$5
Anonymous
8 months ago
CL
$75
Clifton Leftridge
24 months ago (Monthly Donation)
$50
Judith Miles
25 months ago

God bless you all. We are members of Olivet Institutional Baptist, Rev. Dr. Jawanza Colvin , pastor. We are keeping your beautiful family in our prayers.

CL
$75
Clifton Leftridge
26 months ago (Monthly Donation)
$50
Anonymous
26 months ago
CL
$75
Clifton Leftridge
27 months ago (Monthly Donation)
JJ
$50
jean james
27 months ago

May God continue to bless this family in the aftermath of tragedy.

CL
$75
Clifton Leftridge
28 months ago (Monthly Donation)
$100
Anonymous
28 months ago
CL
$75
Clifton Leftridge
29 months ago (Monthly Donation)

Hu Rho! We were so young back then. I met Vernon first week of freshman year. Handsome devil he was. Always had a smile on his face. At a mutual friends birthday party we went bumper car racing. We were both neck and neck all around the track. He won. Ill have to get him on the other side of the offense. My sincere condolences.

Terri Evans
31 months ago

My thoughts and prayers go out to the family. Please know that the Spelman and Morehouse community are lifting you and your children up in prayer! Sincerely, TLE

+ Read More
Najma Jamludeen
32 months ago

In the name of God Most Gracious Most Merciful 1.By the morning glory 2.And by the night when it is stillest 3.Thy Lord hath not forsaken thee, nor is is He displeased 4.And verily the hereafter will be better than the present 5.And verily thy Lord will give unto thee so that thou wilt be content 6.Did He not find thee an orphan and protect thee? 7.Did He not find thee wandering and direct thee? 8.Did He not find thee destitute and enrich thee? 9.Therefore the orphan oppress not 10.Therefore the beggar drive not away 11.Therefore the Bounty of thy Lord proclaim Quran Chapter 93- The Morning Glory

+ Read More
Christiana Clark
32 months ago

I am so very sorry for your loss. I know these words probably sound so hollow and empty with what you are going through so please just know that I will pray for and your children. May God comfort you as only He can and may you feel His presence and His love and know that you are never alone.

+ Read More
Alana Kelly-Stewart
32 months ago

Felt compelled to donate again on today. I pray that God will continue to reside with this family during their time of sorrow.... RIP Mr. Stephens

+ Read More
Dawn Polley
32 months ago

My heart is with you family..

+ Read More
C Anitra Cunningham
32 months ago

It's heart warming to see the amount giving taking place here. This family needs time to heal without the stress and burden of finances. Blessings to all the givers. May you be blessed one-hundred fold.

+ Read More
Nicole Story
32 months ago

So sorry to hear this tragic news - love and hugs to the children. Let me know if there is any way we can be of assistance to you.

+ Read More
Jus Amanda
32 months ago

May God comfort you with his peaceful love in this time.

+ Read More
Ebony Eyes
32 months ago

I will really miss you my friend...from the girl who gave you your first dance as college freshmen at club De Joule', even when you joked that you had two left feet!

+ Read More
Beryl White-Bing
32 months ago

I will be donating on Friday. My condolences to the Family. My heart is breaking for them.

+ Read More
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