NORTH EAST, Pa. - A Ripley family that suffered the loss of their newborn boy could use some support from the community.
The first annual "Remember Me" benefit for Quincy Rae Stepp, a boy who was born prematurely and passed away shortly thereafter, will be held at 2 p.m. Sunday at The Jammin Vine in North East, Pa.
The event will feature live entertainment by DJ Corey B, Amanda Barton, Brian Chase and Antyx. There will also be a Chinese auction, drawings and a buffet. Admission is $10 for adults, $5 for children and free for those under 2.
According to Bess Miles, benefit organizer, funds raised at the event will buy a headstone for Quincy, pay for funeral costs, and the rest will be donated to Mercy Flight.
"My inspiration for the benefit came from wanting to help the family in any way that I could," said Miles. "I hope that anyone who attends the benefit will get the feeling that the money earned will go to a great cause. I hope they also take away a prize from the auction."
Mercy Flight was chosen as a beneficiary due to the help the family received when Quincy had to be flown to Buffalo Children's Hospital from Dunkirk without a charge.
"The family would like to give back to Mercy Flight so that they know how much they do for everyone and that their help is appreciated," said Miles.
On Jan. 2, 2013, Christopher and Cait welcomed their only child, Quincy Rae Houle Stepp into the world. Quincy was premature and suffered through a list of associated conditions requiring extensive medical treatment and surgery.
"Unfortunately, Quincy was never able to come home to Ripley with Chris and Cait," said Miles. "On Jan. 11, 2013, he snuggled with his Mommy and Daddy one last time, and peacefully went home to Heaven."
The Stepps, Quincy's mother and father, said they are thankful for having the "Remember Me" benefit held in their son's honor.
"Knowing that there are people who care, and people who are willing to donate their time or money to support a benefit for the loss of our son, Quincy, makes us extremely thankful," the Stepps said in a statement. "Not many people have the heart to help someone they don't know, or even do know when they're in need, and those people will never fathom how much what they're doing for our family means to us. Losing a child isn't easy, especially when they are your first born, so all the help we get, no matter how big or small, really means a lot to us."
Even though the purpose of the benefit is to help get Quincy a tombstone, what the Stepps are looking forward to most is the donation they will give back to the Mercy Flight team.
"Without them, we wouldn't have been able to cherish the nine amazing days we had being able to see him try to open his eyes or move around," said the Stepps. "Nobody else would have been able to do that for us, so once again, thank you for giving us that memory with Quincy."
The Jammin Vine is located at 11884 E. Main Road in North East, Pa. For more information visit www.facebook.com/events/260562714077124.