ISHPEMING - A candlelight vigil in honor of Christopher "Bubba" Croley and others who have died recently is being held Saturday.
The vigil will be held at 6 p.m. in Ishpeming's Al Quaal Recreation Area. The purpose of the event is to bring the community together for support and to show others that they do not grieve alone and their loved one will not be forgotten, said Gena Johnson, event organizer and Croley family friend.
"It takes so little to let someone know you care, and it can change their life," Johnson said.
The vigil was inspired by Christopher Croley, who died earlier this month due to injuries sustained in a car accident, but it is for anyone who may be grieving the loss of a loved one, Johnson said. Anyone attending is asked to bring a picture of their loved one or write their loved one's name on a a poster board so they may be honored.
"The Croley family has been so appreciative of everything the community has done even through all their grief and it is inspiring," Johnson said.
There will be candles available and a $1 donation is appreciated per candle. There are also around 50 light-up balloons that will be released during the vigil. All proceeds will be donated to the Ishpeming Booster Club this year in hopes that a child who may not be able to be involved in extracurricular activities will benefit from the donations, Johnson said.
"The community response has been far beyond what I expected in such a positive way," Johnson said. "People just really want to help one another in this community and it is a beautiful thing."
Johnson said she hopes the vigil will be an annual event and she hopes to next year donate to a different school.
"There has been so much tragedy recently and I find that many have trouble coping," Johnson said. "You don't have to grieve alone and we should always remember those in our community who have passed. I think it helps the family to continue to heal."
Representatives from the Upper Peninsula Children's Bereavement Network will be on-hand and here will be a prayer and music.
Adelle Whitefoot can be reached at 906-486-4401.