For Mark

Those of you who know Mark are aware of his goofy humor, his overflowing heart and his selflessness when it comes to helping others in need.

I have a vivid memory of him from when I was a small child, around Christmas, and it has forever impacted me. He had helped to build houses for lower income families and wanted to help those in the community who were struggling and couldn't afford to even have Christmas trees. I remember the faces of the families--the tears of joy rolling down their cheeks--as we carried trees and decorations into their homes. Christmas that year was saved for those families, and it was because of Uncle Mark and his beautiful heart. 

When any of us needed help in any way, Mark was there for us, whether he was in a position to help or not. It's because of his giving nature and his beautiful heart that many of us made it through some of the darker times of our own lives. 

Countless people have been touched by his heart-driven actions. And now, Mark needs our help. He needs his community to rally around him as he makes it through a very difficult time. It's our turn to carry the torch for him, as he's carried it for so many throughout his life.

On Thursday, the 22nd of August, in his own home, Mark's giving heart failed him. In all of the hubbub of his rescue, through the subsequent heart attacks that evening, he was surrounded by those who love him. At the time this is being written, Mark will have been incapacitated in the ICU because of this horrific event for nearly a week already. On Tuesday, the 27th of August, Mark finally showed a sign of coming to--he squeezed Tammy's hand. He remains on a mechanical ventilator to breathe, still. 

Nobody knows for sure what will come of this. Nobody knows what the future holds. One thing we do know is that WHEN mark wakes, he will need us all. Because he is self-employed, things will be challenging. We do not know if and when he will be able to work again. Bills need to be paid. Life goes on and these things stop for no one. Imagine if we can support him as he recovers so that he doesn't need to worry about these things. So that he can focus on healing that beautiful heart of his. 

There's an old saying, "many hands make for light work." If each of us can chip in and contribute (whatever we are able) to Mark and his family during this difficult time, it will make a difference. It is our turn.

In gratitude, appreciation and with lots of hope...

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Lee Bradley 
Gray Lion 
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