Building something positive from tragedy is very possible

Building something new and useful from the ashes and debris of a tragedy is not done simply.

But for examples of how to do it well, ask the families of Amarah Filizetti and Jessica Drummond.

In 2015, Amarah was playing in the Gwinn High School gymnasium when a wooden partition fell on her. She was just 4 years old when the tragic accident that stole her life took place.

That same year, Jessica’s life, and that of her unborn baby were cut short in a shooting during the early morning hours of Thanksgiving. She was just 22 years old when she was shot to death in what police called an apparent double murder-suicide.

The incident also resulted in the death of her friend, 22-year-old Brodie Dagenais, and the alleged shooter, 26-year-old Charles Masterson.

Those fateful and heart-wrenching incidents will surely not be forgotten.

But like the phoenix rising from the ashes, the families of Amarah and Jessica have created something new from the flames of tragedy they experienced.

Today, both Amarah’s Princess Parade and Classic Cars on Third will take place.

In honor of the joy Amarah got from dressing up as her favorite Disney princesses, Amarah’s Princess Parade encourages children to dress up in their favorite costumes. The event aims to raise funds for Amarah’s Light, a nonprofit created to help families dealing with the loss of a child.

The event will begin at 11 this morning with a donation-based registration at the Island Store Pavilion at Presque Isle Park in Marquette. The parade around the island will begin at noon.

Classic Cars on Third will start with registration at 10 a.m., with the event open for public viewing from noon to 5 p.m. Registration will take place next to the Third Base Bar, 726 N. Third St., Marquette.

There, you can see classic automobiles and motorcycles from all over the region. Proceeds from the event go to the Marquette Women’s Center, which supports victims of domestic violence and abuse.

It should go without saying that these events will never replace Amarah or Jessica. But we can at least have solace knowing that others will be helped by what’s come of those terrible tragedies.