As we all know, “Life” can be a very fickle being.  Like the weather in Chicago, and Northwest Indiana, it can change in an instant. More than once we have heard about the great things that are happening and then in the blink of an eye an unexpected tragedy can strike the best of families, or neighborhoods or even whole cities.  All you have to do is pick up a paper or check your social media and you will hear a story of how a relatively unknown person has changed the entire complexion of an event through a loving gesture not thinking of his own safety to save another.  Maybe it is just reaching out to talk to someone that is depressed and at their wits end that is able to show the depressed individual there is a light at the end of the tunnel.

But on the other end of the spectrum, it only takes a split second to turn the happiest carefree event into a nightmare and a continuous thought of WHY?  I hope what we are about to say is something that will turn a very dark, almost inconceivable event, into one of those “lights at the end of the tunnel” endings.

In 2018, Lake Central Senior and pitcher on the baseball team was living a dream.  The L.C. Indians were having a great year and for Marty Ewing  was about to take the next step in his longtime dream of pitching in college, as he signed a letter of intent to go to IU South Bend and play baseball.  The Left handed pitcher was well on his way to achieving not only a college diploma but who knows, might even get a shot at the “Show”, Major League Baseball.  He had gone through the first semester which included Fall Baseball and was getting ready to take on college hitters in the spring.  Then Tragedy struck when he was attending a college house party with some of the other players and friends and a group of individuals wanted to enter the party.  They were turned away because no one could verify who they were.  As one of the “intruders” was walking away, as stated in the police report, he turned and fired several shots into the house.  One of the bullets grazed one of Marty’s teammates and another went onto Marty’s neck.  Marty was taken to Northwestern hospital where he was paralyzed from the neck down.  All of this happened on March 31st, 2019 and he and his parents have been there ever sense.  

As you would expect Marty is a Fighter, he still has his dream, and is working to reach that dream one step at a time.  After talking with his Aunt Cheryl, she says that he is working very hard and will soon leave Northwestern Rehab for a advanced place in South Bend.  He is ready to do what ever it takes to get his legs working again and since I live in Vegas and the stories I have heard about him, I am betting on him.  However, as we all know this long drawnout battle is very expensive and he NEEDS HELP.  The Lake Central area has jumped on board and started a GO FUND ME account for Marty @ “Marty Ewing Go fund me” with a $50,000 goal.  At last look there had been 527 donors topping $47000.  If you can help it would be great and much appreciated by Marty and his Family.

This is where the second part of our story comes in.  In November 2017 2 past coaches from Hammond Clark decided to round up a few of their fellow Clark Coaches and a dozen of their past players to start a Nonprofit 501C(3) Charity in Northwest Indiana and called it CAASH CHARITY CO (CAASH stands for Clark Athletic/Alumni Sports Heros).  Gary Ridgley and Fred Behrens felt that Northwest Indiana and Clark High school had been a place where they had a pretty good career and wanted to give back to the community.  With about 15 people on board they spent the first 9 months getting their name out and building up the Charity bankroll.  On September 1st, 2018, they started distributing money to various FOOD BANKS, HAVEN HOUSE, NAZARETH HOUSE, MEALS ON WHEELS< BOYS AND GIRLS CLUBS OF NORTHWEST INDIANA, ANGELS CLOSET and a number of individuals who were in need.  To date they have helped 36 different groups or individuals and have topped the $10,000 mark.   It has been a slow process but it is growing and on June 21st it was brought to the CHARITY’S attention about Marty through one of our board members sister-in-law, Debbie Bachmann.  After hearing the story from LC teacher Dianna Melby and talking to Cheryl Sotello, Marty’s Aunt, we decided we needed to get involved.  A check was writen and an anonymous donor matched our gift and on Friday the check was turned over to the family.  Our Charity has no paid members and 100% of the donations we get goes back to the community.  It is our goal to continue to help Marty and his family through our donations and fundraisers and if anyone would like to donate you can earmark it for Marty or just in General.  We have one Goal in our Charity and that is TO HELP THOSE IN NEED.