Supporting Mike Bavaro

Mikey and his family NEED our Help!  

On March 19th 2020, 18-year-old Michael Bavaro from Lakewood Ranch, Florida was in a horrific boating incident.  Mikey is a Senior at Cardinal Mooney High School in Sarasota, Florida.  

Michael and his family are pillars in the community and are loved by all who know them! 

Sadly, Michael suffered a severe spinal injury and his medical needs extend beyond what our local hospitals can provide. Currently the family is in the process of trying to transport Michael to Atlanta. There he will receive cutting edge treatments and therapy at Shepherd Center (  in the hopes that Michael will one day walk again.

Clearly, Michael’s journey to recovery is unknown at this point, and it will be a long road for Mikey and his family. Beyond the transportation costs, Mikey’s parents will need money to cover medical expenses that insurance will not cover and also living expenses while they care for him in Atlanta. 

Michael is a strong and courageous young man.  We are a community of great faith who believe Michael will heal completely. 

Please consider donating to Michael in his continued journey to recovery. His future depends on this community and it’s support and prayers! 

Thank you for your consideration.

Update as of 3.25.2020:  
I was able to talk to Giovanna and Tony this morning, who wanted to express the amazing amount of love and support they have received by so many. They are simply overwhelmed with the outpouring as well as what is still happening with Mikey and his future needs.

They know how much all of you are thinking and praying for Mikey, so they wanted to give you a medical update. In the accident, he broke, dislocated and fractured several vertebrae. The cervical spine is delicate, housing the spinal cord that sends messages from the brain to control all aspects of the body.

From two surgeries, they were able to stabilize his neck. Since the surgeries, they have kept him on a ventilator. Doctors did a Tracheotomy this morning and inserted a Peg into his stomach. This procedure will help ween Mikey off the ventilator. He remains sedated, but Giovanna and Tony know that he knows they are there based on their eye contact "conversations".

What’s next? In Tony’s words, they are taking this in phases and one day at a time.

Phase 1: Ween him off ventilator and stabilize him for travel.

Phase 2: Travel by air ambulance to Atlanta so Mikey can be admitted to Shepherd Center, which specializes in spinal cord and brain injury rehabilitation along with medical research as a top 10 rehabilitation hospital in the nation - approximately 6-8 weeks.

Phase 3: Acute Rehab at Shepherds which will probably range an additional 6-8 weeks.


Tony and Giovanna continue to ask for your prayers and emotional support through this difficult time.


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Organizer and beneficiary

Molly Gaffney Jackson 
Sarasota, FL
Michael Bavaro 
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