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William "Tiger" Merritt Reinmuth Memorial Fund

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Tiger Merritt is a rock legend. That was apparent to all riding in what felt like a miles long procession of cars filled with musicians, artists, family members and friends who snaked behind his casket before he was laid in the ground just south of Chicago on April 12, 2019. And those who were able to make it represented just a handful of the thousands of people he inspired over his short 31 years on this earth. “To the music community, he was like a prophet. We all loved him and worshiped him,” Nick Bockrath ofCage The Elephant memorialized Tiger at the service while surrounded by two rooms overflowing with his heartbroken family and friends. “The world’s not going to be the same. And it’s not cause he’s gone: It was because he was here.”  Back in 2009, Tiger – a musical phenom by any definition – foundedMorning Teleportation with friends in Bowling Green, Kentucky. While his band has been classified by many music writers as ‘psychedelic rock,’ like Tiger himself, labels never could confine him or his work. Tiger’s songs showcase the depth of his musicianship and the breadth of his talent as they continuously evolved in front of audiences from coast to coast – seamlessly going from upbeat, yet intense, heart-pounding rock, to tear-inducing blues in the next instant. Then he would transport anyone present into his own dreamlike world that would bring audiences to the farthest reaches of the heavens before bringing them back to reality with his profound, yet accessible, lyrics that have touched thousands through his ability to distill a book full of wisdom into a singular, eye-opening lyric. Tiger was also known for the depth of his creativity. Besides being able to master most any instrument left lying around – or even hung on a friend’s wall as ornamentation – Tiger also was known for his striking visual art and the optimist, yet honestly melancholic, lyrics that adorn all of their albums, along with the reems of poetic observations he’s jotted down in notebooks, legal binders and on cigarette packs – or anything else he could find while on tour or couch hopping from city to city.   While you may have never heard of Tiger, you’ve felt his vibe, warmth and talent seep out through countless artists you likely know and love, including bands he collaborated and toured with like Cage the Elephant, Modest Mouse and the Flaming Lips, among too many others to ever be able to count. While Tiger was only 31, his infectious smile revealed a deep understanding of the world that most humans never attain – almost as if he saw well beyond the trappings of modern society, like the blinding screens most of us cling to that he so loved to disdain and avoid. It was like he always lived on another plain, even as he’s left behind so many people still waiting and watching to see how his legacy manifests itself in today’s musicians and so many in the coming generations of artists who may never know Tiger’s name but who will surely have been impacted by all of those he so profoundly touched. --Matt Laslo, journalist & friend of Tiger Thank you for taking the time to read this campaign. My name is Leslie Turci and I'm from the Bowling Green, Kentucky area, which is where I met Tiger. I've known Tiger and his family since 2013 when my husband, Casey, went on tour with Morning Tele. Donations to this campaign will cover funeral and burial expenses.  While I'm the organizer, I have set up withdrawals to go directly to his father, William Reinmuth. All donations beyond the expenses will go toward a foundation in Tiger's name that will support suicide awareness and prevention.    


Leslie Turci
Frankfort, IL

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