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Special Edition
2019 Memorial Scholarships
Never Forget
2019 Memorial Scholarships

This community and me personally were rocked to our core when we lost Ryan Refinski (2003) and Niki Doedens (2004) way to early. These young adults impacted so many lives in so many ways in such a short period of time. Mel’s Charities wanted to make sure we “Never Forget” them. Once again, they were leading the way when this type of heartbreaking loss happens to other families.

Spring is in the air, Seniors are close to graduating and special evening happens at all the area High Schools, Senior Scholarship Night. For Mel’s Charities these nights are joyful, emotional and inspiring.  We help families setup and sustain scholarships in memory of their son or daughter that passed away too early. The scholarships are important not only to the recipients, but to families who lost a loved one. By enjoying our Great Times for Great Causes you are providing these families a big community hug and providing  peace, joy & comfort knowing their child’s memory & legacy will forever burn bright through their scholarship.

Below is the transcript from Mike Hogan’s 2019 scholarship presentation. Mike was the first recipient of the Jan Schanen Memorial Scholarship. His message really epitomizes what Mel’s is all about. Impacting lives.
- Tom (Mel) Stanton

Mike Hogan 
First Recipient of the Jan Schanen Memorial Scholarship

As most of you know, I am a proud 2017 graduate of Grafton High School. Currently, I am studying sports journalism at St. Bonaventure University. You’d think journalism major would be the least nervous person to go in front of his old high school to speak. Yet, I am.

I sat on this stage two years ago at the end of my senior year. Thankfully, I received a few scholarships. However, none of them have been more impactful than the Jan Schanen Memorial scholarship.

While I may have received money from this scholarship, it proved be a lot more than that.
Later that summer, I met Dave Schanen at Melapalooza. We talked for a while and made a connection with each other. By the end of our conversation, he said, “For every semester that you stay in school, I’ll provide you an additional $500.
He and his family have more than lived up to their promise. Not only have they given me $500 at the conclusion of each semester, but they have taken great interest in me as a person. Mr. Schanen does not just write me a check, give it to me and off I go with the money.

They support me and follow me on my journey. To me, that is more valuable than any dollar amount on a check. Mr. Stanton and the Schanen family are some of the best people that this community has to offer. They really are.

The final message I’ll leave for everyone on this stage tonight:
When the night is over, and your name has been called for a scholarship don’t just take it and run. The people that selected you for a scholarship chose you for a reason. They are investing in you as a person. They are interested in you. Go to them in person and thank them. Show your appreciation. Make more of an impression on them. Because most of what these people know about you is all from a paper application.

Be present and make connections. You never know where a connection can take you. I know from experience. You could be brought closer to people like Tom Stanton and Mel’s Charities. Or, you could make lifelong connections with people like Mr. Schanen and the rest of his family.

Also, don’t forget to donate to Mel’s Charities. They truly make this community what it is. Even the smallest of donations can help make big differences!

Mike Hogan
Jan Schanen Memorial Scholarship Recipient

Golden Voice
Through my work with Mel's Charities, my parents and I decided it was time to pay the selfless acts of kindness forward with a "Golden Voice" scholarship. This scholarship is to be given annually to a student who makes an effort to be a "Golden Voice" impacting fellow classmates who may not always be the center of the social sene or to someone who has perceived through challenges to graduate. We revived eight outstanding nominations who ALL deserve recognition. Those essays were all phenomenal to read and tough to pick from. As a result, We decided to award the first annual "Golden Voice" scholarship to both Caitlyn Bruss and Jimmy Juergensen. 

Kevin Winter
Homestead High School
Dr. Andy Brooks Memorial Scholarship
First Annual Memorial Scholarship to a Homestead High School senior. 
Good evening,
I couldn’t let the night fall without sharing with you my thoughts regarding last night.
It was a very special night indeed.  On my way to the banquet I was trying to wrap my head around the synergy between the three organizations.  Goals, saves and assists continued to repeat in my brain. 

Though these three things are easily connected to the lacrosse field, they also connect to what happens each day at First Bank Financial Centre and with Mel’s Charities.  We set goals as a team, individually and with our customers.  We save; sometimes money and sometimes “we save the day” as we deliver a distinctive customer experience.  Our days are all about assists.  It is why I do what I do and where I chose to work. The FBFC mission statement “make lives better” isn’t just a saying but a way of working and living out each day.

Mel’s Charities is doing the same thing.  The words “Great Times for a Great Cause” don’t do it justice.  Yes, there are goals to the organization.  How do they keep this going for years and years to come? The countless stories of those that have been the benefactor of donations certainly aligns with the “assist” and when it comes to “the save”,; Mel’s Charities impacts lives through the save; “We will not forget…” memorial scholarships are keeping the memory of loved ones alive and inspiring others to do great things.

Finally, Coach LaValle it was very apparent in your introduction at the banquet that the goals, saves and assists you coach are not just statistics for the season but a parallel to living out life.  Your players are blessed to have that message and your example.
I wish you continued success on the field and in life.

Kris Barger
Assistant Vice President /Branch Manager
First Bank Financial Centre, Mequon

Thank you again for making the Dr. Andy Brooks Scholarship a reality and being part of our award banquet.  I'm thrilled you both could attend, as well as, Dick Phelan too.
Knowing that Dr Andy's legacy lives and that this scholarship will help future student athletes is comforting for the Brooks Family.  I know Andrew was completely moved by the evening and might have knocked him off the tracks a little.  He's had the chance to digest it all and is moved.
Everything that has occurred over these past 2 weeks embodies all that is good in this world.  Thank you for making me a better person by including me, our school and lacrosse program.  We are better because of it.  A little dose of God's good graces.
Mike LaValle
Homestead High School LaCross Coach
2019 Memorial Scholarship Recipients
Never Forget
Niki Doedens Memorial Fund
Countless lives impacted

Cedarburg High School
TJ Beck MemorialScholarship 

Katie DiFlorentiis Can Do Memorial Scholarship
Mikayla Wankowski
Above and Beyond Memorial Scholarship
Rachel Yurske
Devin Krumbiegel Memorial Scholarship
Noah Schultz
Austin Riechers Memorial Scholarship
Owen Bartos
Andrew Golden
Alyssa Nicole Dorfler Memorial Scholarship
Selena Esten
Lucia Estrada
Catherine Gwidt
Connor Hester
Annika Jahr

Cedarburg Community Scholarship Fund
Stephen W. Castner Memorial Scholarship
James Cullen
Mary Riker
Brian Rintelman Memorial Scholarship
Rachel Yurske
Olivia Samse
Isabella Covert

Ryan Refinski Memorial Scholarship
Lucia Estrada
Stuart Mitkey Memorial Scholarship
Gianna Stanton
Margaret Michaletz

Port Washington High School
Tyler Buczek Memorial Scholarship
Alaena Kultgen
Adam Baierl
Dustin Brede Memorial Scholarship
Darian Drewitz

Grafton High School
Achievement Award in memory of Jan Schanen
Jordan Beckmann
Hannah Hacker
Ashlynn Micoliczyk
CMV Memorial Scholarship "Don't Stop Believing"
Jordan Abts
Lydia Fischer
Brandon Pegelow
Benjamin Turner
Joshua Davis-Joiner Memorial Scholarship
Brandon Pegelow
Craig Carlson Memorial Soccer Scholarship
Hailey Block
Carter Day
Malaya Sperber
Corbin Woessner
Christopher Kalies Memorial Scholarship
Jordan Abts
James Buschman
Matthew Kline
Adam Roscoe
Kate Gruetzmacher Memorial Scholarship
Alyssa Blawat
Jaden Polack
Jeff Gruetzmacher Memorial Golf Scholarship
Stephanie Jondahl
Jaden Polack

Homestead High School
Dr. Andy Brooks Memorial Scholarship
Andrew Brooks
This was a difficult newsletter to create on so many levels. We just felt that everyone needed to see in print the young lives you are impacting by supporting our Great Times for Great Causes and 300 FUN(d) and for that we are grateful.
Copyright © *2019* *Mel's Charities*, All rights reserved.

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Mel's Charities · 885 Badger Cir · Grafton, WI 53024-9436 · USA

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