Hi, my name is Aly and I’m setting up this fundraiser in memory of my friend and fellow teacher at Cutler Bay Middle, Michelle Vargas.
Michelle lost her life yesterday, on her birthday, in order to save her autistic son from drowning.
They had traveled to El Salvador for her son Michael to see his paternal grandparents and visited a beach. While at the beach, they got caught up in a rip current and although Michael was saved, Michelle drowned. If you knew Michelle personally, you know she’d give up her life 100 times if it meant saving Michael.
Her family is on the way to El Salvador to bring Michelle’s remains, as well as Michael back home.
Transport of human remains is extremely expensive. Funeral and burial costs, when not planned, are also very expensive. Michael is 10 years old and severely autistic. He will need a lifetime of care.
Michelle wouldn’t have approved of this Go Fund Me because she did not like asking anyone for anything, much less for money; yet she would have been the first one to donate or help anyone who needed help. She worked 6 full periods a day, without a break. She was our school’s Activities Director and our Test Chair. She also worked in our after school program and our summer camp/school. If you were a new teacher (or an old one) and had a question pop into your head at midnight, Michelle gave out her cell phone at the beginning of the year and if you texted her, she would answer it for you. If you needed to leave early for whatever reason and needed coverage for your class, Michelle would take them so you could go. I can honestly say Michelle was an incredible human being and will be sincerely missed by many. She was one of the few people I called a friend.
I ask for your donations to help her family give Michelle a proper funeral and burial here in Miami, and to help Michael receive the care he will need for the rest of his life. Please donate what you can, and hug your loved ones tight. This could happen to any of us.
EDIT (a requirement of GoFundMe): All proceeds of this fundraiser are being disbursed via bank transfer to her sister Marcella, who will be paying for the transfer of her remains, as well as her funeral services and burial. Any overage she will use to offset Michael's care.
I ask for privacy for her family at this time as they try to process this tremendous tragedy and loss. I will update here with funeral arrangements.