Boston may be 600 miles from Cleveland, but for a pair of local men, the city could be one town over.
“We thought it would be cool to know that the city of Avon is supporting Boston,” Avon resident Mike Cooper said.
Cooper, who owns Cooper Disposal in Cleveland said he feels blessed and wants to help give back to others.
“I was sitting at the kitchen table with my wife when the (Boston Marathon bombings) happened and said I wanted to do something for those families.
The bombings killed three and injured more than 250, many seriously. At least 15 individuals underwent amputations.
“I wanted to do something for those families,” Cooper said.
Cooper, along with Avon High School history teacher Collin Anderson, have organized Avon’s Memorial to The Boston Marathon on Friday, May 10 at 7:30 p.m. The event is open to the public.
In December, Henderson sent emails to his students in December after the Sandy Hook massacre. The email was shared around Cleveland.
Avon's Memorial to The Boston Marathon is Friday, May 10 at 7:30 p.m. at the Avon Middle School Stadium at May 10.
The two have made significant headway. Several councilmembers have committed to attending as have all the city’s department heads, Cooper said.
“The police chief, several firefighters and several hundred have confirmed,” he said.
The night will start at 7:30 p.m. where attendees can mix and mingle and walk the track to honor the victims.
“There will be music playing, American Flags will be flying,” Cooper added.
At 8:15 p.m. several speakers will address the crowd, including one Avon resident who ran the marathon and missed the bombings by minutes.
"He saw it all," Cooper said.
At 8:30 p.m. luminaries will be lit.
Attendees can purchase T-shirts for $12 as well as luminaries. The two have also set up a fund at Chase Bank. Donations can be made to “Avon Cares.”
Those who attend the event can also sign a banner
“Our vision would be to go to Boston and hand-deliver the check and a banner to ne Fund Boston,” Cooper said.
The One Fund Boston was set up by Massachusetts Governor Deval Patrick and Boston Mayor Menino to assist victims of the bombings.
Cooper, who has three children in the Avon school district, said Avon Superintendent Mike Laub and teachers are expected as well.
“It’s kind of cool to bring everyone together in Avon to support Boston,” Cooper said. “I’d love to fill the stadium. We’re trying to lead by example.”