ALLEGAN, Mich.- After serving more than 11 years during two tours overseas with the Army National Guard, the tough part seemed to be over for 29-year-old Sgt. Christopher Schenk.
Then, while awaiting the Fourth of July fireworks at a sandbar on Torch Lake, Sgt. Schenk dove into shallow water, injuring his neck and paralyzing him.
His father pulled him from the water and got him to the hospital, but the once vibrant, strong soldier was now facing his toughest battle as a vent-dependent quadriplegic.
With family and friends by his side, members of the 125th infantry worked to raise money for medical bills, gaining support and love from all over the country.
Friends say the time before the accident was the most exciting of his life because expecting a baby boy with girlfriend Rachelle.
Sadly, the two never got the chance to meet. Saturday, one month after the accident, Sgt. Schenk passed away.
Now, family and friends continue their mission, looking to help raise money for “Little Schenk” and help family with any medical bills.
Friends say they’re pulling together to make sure the child knows who his father was.
They say he was carefree and happy, a family man who would want his son to know how excited he was to be a dad.
A friend on the Facebook fundraising page for Sgt. Schenk posted, “He was a courageous soldier who never hesitated to defend our country. A strong hero does not even begin to describe Chris Schenk. He will be in our hearts forever.”
You can donate to the family of Sgt. Chris Schenk:
Fundraising website for family:
To donate by mail: Chris Schenk Assistance Fund, 5047 W. Main St. #368. Kalamazoo, MI 49009.
PNC banks are also accepting donations for the “Chris Schenk Assistance Fund.
Fundraising site from Army friends:
August 21st, 2013 from 5pm to 8pm
Monellis Bar and Grill
5675 Byron Center Ave SW