My brother Aaron Slager ended his own life on March 22, 2016. He had suffered quietly from bipolar disorder, even losing his mother to the same affliction.
He found great happiness in becoming the father of two daughters Morgan (9) and Madison (7) and four stepsons. He went from being the typical bachelor, to a father of 5 overnight (before his second daughter was born) and embraced it with great devotion. The constant bustle of a busy house gave him such joy and pride.
Following a tragic accident beyond his control that took the life of one of his sons, Aaron battled tremendous guilt and depression which led to the breakup of his marriage. After his divorce, we moved him from Illinois to New Jersey with us, in an effort to provide him with the emotional and financial support he needed to make it through hard times. Despite finding a new job and starting a new life in Nj, the depth of loss was too much for Aaron and he gave up.
This photo is from their last visit together, one month ago.
We are asking for assistance with funeral costs that I paid, which included a post mortem transfer to Illinois to that his kids could see him (at their wishes) before he was cremated. Aaron did not have money to cover his final expenses, so I am paying for them. Any and all help will be greatly appreciated, as this was not something I budgeted for.
Aaron was the kind of guy that put others needs before his own. He had a big heart, and his children were the light of his life. He wanted his girls to be provided for, hoping and assuming that they would receive monetary benefits from his death. Unfortunately due to the nature of his passing, his life insurance claims will most likely be denied, leaving his girls who relied on his income, with nothing. We are also asking for monetary donations to help cover their expenses that Aaron had assisted with such as school supplies, clothing, food, and extra curricular activities.
We are hoping that with your generosity and support, we can exceed our goal of $20,000. We will donate half of everything over our goal to NAMI (National Alliance on Mental Illness) in his name. Aaron grew up feeling like mental illness was something that couldn't be talked about. Had he been given the support from an organization like NAMI, he may have had he courage to seek help.
I am currently researching how to set up an account for Morgan and Madison. I'm still unsure how to do this properly since they're minors and I'm not their parent. However, the funeral is in a few days and people have been asking how and where to donate, so I wanted to set this up quickly and I have their mothers permission to do so. I will update as soon as I've figured it all out, and I will provide receipts and proof of how your donation was used if you require that.
Aaron meant a lot to a lot of people. He was my best friend, and his death leaves a void in me that cannot be filled. As Morgan and Madison's uncle, I feel a responsibility to honor his wishes and see that they receive the help they need. But I cannot do it alone. Thank you so much for your kindness and generosity towards our family that has lost so much.
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