By Heather Lusk
It’s an event inspired by a mother’s history of giving to those in need.
Let’s Give Them Strength, raising money for the St.Vincent Foundation, was created by event organizer Chris Lazaro more than a year ago to continue the memory of his mother.
“She passed away three years ago and I decided to carry on her name,” Lazaro said.
“Basically since I was 13 years old, I was raised around helping and raising money for families in need to help pay bills or treatments,” said Lazaro, whose mother was executive director of the Porter County Cancer Society.
Proceeds from the event will go toward the St.Vincent House, a hospitality house available for patient families scheduled to open in 2017.
“To me there were never enough homes for parents to be by their kids when they’re in for expensive treatments,” said Lazaro who recognized that many families cannot afford to travel back and forth when their children are hospitalized.
The event’s name came from Lazaro seeing the young hospital patients encouraging one another to be strong.
“Let’s give them strength,” he said, “meaning by prayer, by donation and by volunteering.”
The July 18 event will start with a motorcycle ride commencing at IndyWest Harley-Davidson, passing the Peyton Manning Children’s Hospital where “we’ll wave to the kids,” according to Lazaro. The motorcycles will arrive at Vaughn Motorwerks, 7441 Mayflower Park Drive, in Zionsville by noon for food, kids activities, auctions and raffles. Four bands will perform all day, ending with tribute band KISS Resurrection.
Last year Lazaro and his committee of eight raised more than $3,000. Tickets are $5 per person or $15 per family and are available the day of the event. Admission is waived for each person donating a new toy to the hospital with separate registration for the motorcycle ride.
Contributions may be made at give.stvincent.org/letsgivethemstrength