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Wayne Comes Together To Help Boys Who Lost Parents

Residents and businesses join forces to raise money for boys' scholarship fund.

Residents and businesses are joining forces to raise money for the Brothers Voit Scholarship Fund. 

The three Voit brothers are Johnny, Stephen, and Christopher. Their mother Lorraine, 44, died Dec. 4 last year; her husband died John, 48, died in March.

A special event entitled Wayne Takes Care of Wayne will be held at at 5 p.m. on Sunday, Feb. 19. 

Admission costs $10. There will be an open raffle running throughout the event. Several Wayne businesses, including , , and , have donated gift certificates that attendees can win in the raffle. Each admission ticket purchased gives attendees another entry into the raffle. Proceeds from the event will go to fund.

Haley Finnegan came up with the idea to hold the event.

"I just want to help," Finnegan said. "I would hope that if I was in a similar position, someone would want to do the same for me."

The Pantry Party is co-sponsoring the event with Finnegan. The organization helps books performances for local bands, but instead of charging admission, they ask attendees to donate canned and non-perishable food that they then donate to food pantries.

Wayne resident Marla Lacherza and Jeff Petriello, a former resident, founded the organization in 2009.

“We’re all about community events and when we heard about what the family had been through, we knew we wanted to help,” Lacherza said. “But for this event, we thought that it would be best to charge an admission fee and just give it to the family.”

Finnegan said the support from the community has been overwhelming. She said that people and businesses have been contacting her all week with ways they would like to help.

Four local bands will perform at the event: Waking Lights, The Nico Blues, Your Neighbors, and Della Valle.

“The gift that I was given as a child was music and to be able to share that gift for such a tremendous cause is so heartening,” said Josh Straus, a member of Your Neighbors and a Wayne Valley High School alumni. “As a musician, it’s amazing to be able to use that gift to give back to the community and to a family that has been through so much.”

It is not the first time the community has banded together to help the family.

The , the Wayne Police Athletic League, and teachers throughout the school district . Proceeds from the event went to help pay for Lorraine's funeral and help purchase clothes and Christmas gifts for the boys. The football team and cheerleading squad and the football team, band, and booster club also assisted in the fundraising effort. 

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