NewsLocal NewsIn Your NeighborhoodPine Island / Matlacha

Actions

"They always come together"; benefit concert brings tight-knit island community together

one week after losing a fellow resident
"They always come together"; tight-knit island community continues to grieve
"They always come together"; tight-knit island community continues to grieve
Posted at 6:00 PM, Apr 21, 2024

ST JAMES CITY, Fla. — Hundreds of people came out to raise money a week after a car crashed into That BBQ Place, killing one Matlacha woman and injuring four others.

People Fox 4's Bella Line spoke with say they are raising money the best way they know how for Mary Lou Sharp's family and Butch Gay... through music.

After a week of grieving the loss of Mary Lou Sharp, who many call the "Pioneer of Pine Island"

The community has come together and many tell me, they have become stronger than before and they point to the loss of their loved one as a reason.

Friends and family say, now with a memorial at That BBQ Place, where Mary Lou lost her life, and Butch Gay now facing medical expenses they are doing everything they can financially to help ease this loss.

Deb and The Dynamics led a fundraiser for Mary Lou's family, Butch Gay, and the other victims. They say there is no goal in mind, just donate what you can.

“They always come together when somebody needs something," said Deb Biela, a long-time friend of Mary Lou and Butch. "Just a really special kind of love. A down-home love.”

The people at the benefit concert say that music has always brought the Greater Pine Island community together, even now in the wake of grief.

They say through a GoFundMe for Mary Lou's funeral expenses and events like the benefit concert, they say they are trying to give back to the people who have given so much to them.