Other ways to help include providing a hot meal or Christmas presents
Depot Theatre to produce music benefit
By Alison Rooney
Knowing of the economic challenges facing Jim Lovell’s family in the wake of his sudden passing Dec. 1 in the Metro-North train tragedy, a few friends and neighbors of the Lovell/Montgomery family from Lake Valhalla worked together to set up a GoFundMe account to raise funds to support the family’s immediate and future needs. GoFundMe was chosen as the funding site because, unlike other crowd funding sites, the money donated goes to the cause regardless as to whether or not the target goal has been reached.
As it turned out, this was not a factor, as the community responded swiftly, with donations quickly surpassing the original goal of $10,000. By Monday morning (Dec. 2), contributions reached more than $20,000, and, as of this writing, 5 p.m. on Dec. 4, the amount raised exceeds $90,000.
According to Toby Shimin, one of those friends who set up the funding process, they are no longer adjusting the target goal, as “we decided to let that goal stay and trust that people know in a situation like this, there will be a need for all kinds of financial help. We assume the funds will go first to immediate funeral expenses and such, but it is entirely up to Nancy how to use the gifts.” Donations will be accepted indefinitely at gofundme.com/5jmdbg. Donations can be made with a note to the family, or anonymously; the choice is up to the donor. A look through the comments reveals the depth of affection and support for the family. Some donations have come from those who do not know the family but have been touched by reading of the circumstances necessitating the donations.
The description of the funding on GoFundMe is as follows: “Today the Hudson Valley community lost an extraordinary human being. Jim Lovell, a loving husband and father, was an incredible neighbor, friend and incredibly kind soul. Stunned by this tragic news, we are coming together to help Nancy, Finn, Jack and Hudson with this campaign.
This GoFundMe page has been created so everyone can easily donate as little or as much as they can. Please feel free to pass this page on to any of your friends/family who may be interested in participating.”
For those who would prefer to send in a check directly to the family, this can be mailed to: Nancy Montgomery, P.O. Box 254, Cold Spring, NY 10516.
Other plans to aid the family are also in the works. Lovell and Montgomery’s colleagues at the Philipstown Depot Theatre have begun planning for a benefit concert, most likely in January, which will feature both musicians and bands that Lovell and Montgomery enjoyed and presented, often at the Music Tracks evenings at the Depot, and local singers and musicians wishing to support the family in song. The event will probably take place at a venue larger than the Depot itself as a big turnout is expected. Look for updates on this event as they become available.
Not all community contributions are in the form of money. Fellow Haldane parent Lucia Grandetti is organizing meals through Our Lady of Loretto Church for the family. Those who wish to prepare and deliver meals should call Grandetti at 845-265-4149. Also, Skybaby Studio at 75 Main St., Cold Spring, will be collecting wrapped Christmas gifts for Nancy and the boys from now until Dec. 21, for delivery on Sunday, Dec. 22. If you have any questions, you can contact Melia Marzollo of Skybaby directly at 914-483-8555.
Philipstown.info/The Paper will provide continuing information on these and other fundraising and/or service initiatives as they develop.
This story updates an earlier version.