This past Tuesday marked the 25th anniversary of the day Brian LaViolette's life was lost in a swimming accident in the bay of Green Bay. Brian, who was 15 years old at the time, was an excellent student, loved sports and was very close with his family and friends.
The day of Brian’s funeral, his family promised in his name and memory to accomplish great things. The Brian LaViolette Scholarship Foundation was formed as a 501(C) (3) not-for-profit corporation (and is now a 501c3 Public Charity). Since 1992, the foundation has presented 781 scholarships to hardworking, admirable college-bound students. A variety of scholarship programs are offered, including scholarships for graduating seniors, men and women who fought in the service, international students and more. The foundation's mission is to honor hard work and community service, to offer inspiration, and share the belief that "The Journey is the Reward," which special words come from Brian himself.
VerHalen was one of the sponsors for the event and was honored to be a part of the foundation's milestone. Those at the event were able to hear from scholarship recipients and others who have been involved with Brian's Foundation, like guest speaker and Medal of Honor Recipient, Sal Giunta. A live and silent auction was lead by Bill Jartz of WBAY-TV and Darrel Burnett.
A promise made. A promise kept. Brian's family, the Brian Scholarship Foundation and thousands of supporters have been able to take a tragedy and make it something positive for students, their families and communities for the last twenty-five years.
For more information on the foundation, visit their website here.
Sal Giunta, Medal of Honor Recipient, was gifted an authentic Green Bay Packer jersey with his name across the back.
The LaViolette family presented several Spirit Awards to recognize individuals who demonstrate exceptional leadership, commitment and extraordinary compassion.
The live auction, which took place at the Lambeau Field Legends Club Room, included this famous photo of Vince Lombardi enlarged and framed.
Former Miss Wisconsin and Brian LaViolette scholarship recipient, Kimberly Sawyer Larsen, performed "What A Wonderful World" by Louis Armstrong.