Mike Wagner and Bev Fowers aboard SV Queequeg, a 1982 Irwin 40 MKII, raised money for the Barton Center for Diabetes Education by creating Boot Key Harbor Holiday T-Shirts, selling them to the cruising community in the harbor and then they donated all of the proceeds to help sponsor a child for the Diabetes Day Camp, all in the name of their Son, Daniel, who passed in 2009 from complications from diabetes. Bev’s Son, Matthew, wanted to be sure that the camp that Daniel attended as a youth got the donation, so that other kids in that area could benefit.
Daniel was a sponsorship recipient when he was a young boy, so the family recognized how this could help other children who cannot afford to pay for this important camp. The camp teaches the children how to manage their disease, and learn that they are not the only ones with these problems. No kid is ever turned away because they have sponsors like Mike and Bev.
”We’re not in a financial position where we can just, you know, sponsor a kid to go to camp. We just don’t have that kind of money,” says Mike. “But what we can do is, we can buy the shirts at Ben’s cost.” They then sell them to other cruisers, reminding all the Marathon Cruisers Net listeners, and others, until they are all sold. This year they made 55 shirts.This is their third year raising the money from the sales. This year they surpassed their previous year’s donation, raising more than $700, up from $640 the previous year. The theme for the logo was a Santa on a Paddleboard, a design created by their Son, Ben, who runs Iconic Silkscreen, and Scott Wilde – http://Iconicsilkscreen.com
The couple, now in their 5th winter season in Marathon, FL, began cruising on an AS28 cat-rigged yawl that Mike built. Mike used a friend’s barn for 4 year, where he built their boat from plywood and west system epoxy. The boat, which only drew 14” with her boards up, still is being used for cruising in the Keys.
These days, Mike and Bev can be found on an Irwin 40 that had sunk on dry land. The owner had left a tarp covering the boat. When that tarp disintegrated, it clogged the scupper drains, and the boat filled with water. With a great deal from the previous owner, they are restoring the boat back to a beautiful live-aboard.
Thanks, Steve. for doing this article! Mike and Bev are truly "good people" that are well deserving of many kudos! We consider ourselves blessed that we have had the opportunity to get to know them and can call them friends. They embody the cruising spirit !
Diane & Al Dashevsky
I appreciate Mike Wagner and Bev Fowers for doing this for diabetics. – Nervas @ Reverse Your Diabetes Today Review
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