RANDOLPH, NJ- A joint wake was held Wednesday for the two Randolph boys who died Saturday in a car accident. The service was held at Resurrection Parish in Randolph.
Jack Timmerman and Calvin Verduga, who just completed their junior year at Randolph High School, died in a one-car crash Saturday afternoon. They were riding in a classmate's car when it veered off Ironia Road at about 1:35 p.m. There were four people in the car when it crashed.
No additional updates were released on Wednesday about the accident by the Morris County Prosecutor's Office, which still is saying that the crash is under investigation.
The community, shocked and saddened by the tragedy, has shown tremendous strength and resolve, coming together to help the affected friends and families cope and begin to heal. St. Matthew the Apostle Church opened their doors for a memorial service on Monday evening in which around a thousand people attended. Resurrection Church hosted the wake on Wednesday July 30, and was also overflowed with people waiting over an hour to get inside to pay their respects.
Many local restaurants have generously offered to donate food and beverage items to help support the Repast lunch after the funerals, at which organizers expect about 1,000 attendees. Hundreds of parents and neighbors have volunteered to help facilitate the lunch and assist in setting up, serving, and organizing all the teenagers and adults who are expected to attend.
Timmerman's funeral will be held Thursday at the Mendham Hills Community Church, located at 480 Route 24 in Chester Township, at 10 a.m.
Verduga's funeral will be held Thursday at Sacred Heart Roman Catholic Church, located at 4 Richards Avenue in Dover, at 1 p.m
A repast/reception will be held will be held at Resurrection Parish Church for family and friends from 3 p.m. to 6 p.m. on Thursday as well.
The Randolph Community has come together to assist the families and friends in their time of need, and donations are being made in honor of Timmerman and Verduga. According to Randolph Schools ( http://www.rtnj.org/ ) Timmerman's family is asking that in lieu of flowers, donations can be made to “Beyond the Walls”, a Mendham-based non-profit organization dedicated to helping local disadvantaged families.
According to the website, “Beyond the Walls” is a nonprofit organization dedicated to making substantial long-term impact in the lives of the poor and disadvantaged through focused opportunities in our communities, our country and the world. We feel this holistic approach addresses a variety of needs: education, food, housing, medical care, micro-enterprise, job training, and mentoring. In addition, beyond the walls exists to encourage, empower and inspire volunteers “to whom much is given” to be the agents of change in these under-resourced communities by connecting them to relational, hands-on service."
Timmerman had previously worked with the agency. Jack and his mom worked with a Beyond the Walls team a few years ago serving the scavengers of the Guatemala City garbage dump, according to reports. People can donate to “Beyond the Walls” at http://www.beyond-the-walls.org/ .
Beyond the Walls has already received many donations in Timmerman's memory, and they are very appreciative.
A “YouCaring” fundraiser has been set up for Verduga's mother Alma by close family friend and neighbor Alyssa Hanrahan.
"We are hoping to raise money that will help support them through this incredibly difficult time," Hanranhan stated.
"We can only hope that some sort of financial relief for their family will help lessen the burden during this painful time. Please say a prayer for his family, especially his mom, Alma. We will forever keep Calvin in our hearts."
"Our family has always loved the Verduga's," Hanrahan said. "The kids were always welcome at our home, and our children at their home. After spending much time with Alma over the weekend, my daughters wanted to visit with Alma to pay their condolences and remind her how much they loved Calvin.
‘While my girls were speaking with Alma, I just sat and watched as they were talking and couldn't imagine the pain she was going through, how she gathered the strength to sit in a chair, let alone speak with family and visitors. The pain on her face is indescribable."
Hanrahan said she knew Alma Verduga was a full-time working mother, and she couldn't imagine her having to return to work while grieving.
"When my girls and I headed back to our home, we all said at the same time that we should start some sort of fund for the Verdugas," Hanrahan said, adding that the money will be given directly to Alma Verduga as the beneficiary. "We felt that only she knows what bills she needs to pay, whether supporting her other two children, Yury and Tiffany, paying her monthly expenses such as utilities, or even funeral expenses. We felt it was 100 percent her decision as to how she felt donations received were best put to use."
As of Wednesday evening, more than $18,000 has been raised. Hanrahan also said that many residents have sent emails offering help through meal donations.
"We had hoped to have raised $5,000 by August 31," Hanrahan stated. "When checking in with the page the next day, we were amazed that we had already surpassed the goal. It is absolutely wonderful how our community has come together. Although Randolph is a large town, everyone seems to be in contact with one another to help in any way possible. I have not changed the original goal amount and will leave the page open for people that would like to continue to donate. The website will issue a paper check directly to Mrs. Verduga with all funds collected.”