Hello, my name is Glenn Curran. I am the uncle of Ginger Gerard (12 years old), Louis Gerard (15 years old), and Vincent Gerard (18 years old). They are smart, compassionate, inquisitive young people who have always been full of light and hope. Like many, I am so proud and grateful to know them, and look forward to their flourishing into adulthood. Ginger the budding visual artist. Louis the drummer who just started his first band with his best buds. Vincent the young intellectual, interested in psychology and big ideas. The three Gerard children have lived their whole lives in the Southside Chicago neighborhood of Mt. Greenwood, in a home shared with their great grandparents, Gene and Larry Dansky, and Parents, Erin and Bill Gerard.
Unfortunately, the family recently suffered an incomprehensible loss. Their father and friend Bill tragically took his own life on the grounds of his workplace in the late-night hours between February 21st and 22nd, the date of his daughter Ginger's 12th birthday. Myself and other family members arrived to their home for Ginger's pre-planned birthday party on the 22nd, but instead of a party, we set to the truly gut wrenching task of collectively informing the children of their father's suicide.
Anyone who knows Bill knows that, despite any personal struggles, he loved and respected his children deeply; often saying "they're the best thing I've ever done." Notions he reaffirmed in a short but heart-breaking final note discovered at the scene of his passing. Bill was a former Union sheet metal worker who transitioned to become a Local 399 Operating Engineer. At the time of his passing he was Assistant to the Chief at the Mars Research and Development Building on Chicago's Goose Island. At work he was a brilliant and highly skilled engineer, valued for his unusually broad expertise across a wide ranging set of fields including welding, hydraulics, sheet metal, steam, electronics, etc. If there was something wrong, Bill knew how to fix it. At home, he was a homebody. Spending time playing music, video games, and sports with his children, and endeavoring in various craft and artistic hobbies like sculpture welding, knot tying, and tinkering and building things. To this day, the local sheet metal union where he apprenticed displays sculpture work he created as an example of welding excellence; truly someone who was so good at his craft he elevated it to an artform.
Bill was his family's sole breadwinner and provider, with Erin at home as a fulltime homemaker. In the absence of their Father, the family is left with an uncertain and dim financial outlook. Insurance, tuition, medical bills, therapy, groceries, and all other life expenses are now fully in jeopardy and uncertain. While there is a strong and willing family support unit in place, economic access is severely limited and the needs are tangible and immediate.
I have created this Go Fund Me in order to raise money to cover the immediate and near term life expenses of the Gerard children, while we set to the task of picking up the pieces and attempting to build a new support structure around them. It's a very difficult task, and frankly one that is not practically possible in the absence of outside financial support. I am personally undertaking the administration of any money raised on behalf of the three children, and vow to them, my family, and the community that I will carry this out in a dutiful, diligent, and responsible manner for their sole benefit. I undertake this task with the full authority and support of the Gerard children. I set an initial fundraising target of $100,000... but I don't even know where to begin. Truly coming up with a number intended to provide an economic base for the three children over many years is frankly overwhelming. Bill was the family's sole source of income.
Please consider a donation of any size if you can, and if you are unable to support, please consider sharing this on social media, or in texts, emails or by word of mouth to anyone who knows, knew, or loves the Gerards.
Information about relevant memorial services for friend and father Bill is here:
From the bottom of our hearts, we thank you for your time and consideration. We hope that you may remember Bill for his creative drive, infectious laugh, and witty sense of humor. And if you see the children and family around the neighborhood, I would ask that you be guided by sympathy and compassion for the unfortunate circumstances set upon them.
-Glenn Curran & Family, on behalf of the Gerard children.