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Thursday, August 11, 2011

Lyddy Fundaiser Lights Up the Point and the Night

Lyddy Fundaiser Lights Up the Point and the Night
Third annual beach blast a soggy, satisfying affair
By Mike Lauterborn
(Posted to 8/11)
© 2011. All Rights Reserved.

Fairfield, CT – When it kicked off mid-afternoon Saturday, the sky was blue and the waves gentle. As the day progressed though, the clouds moved in, the rain came down in buckets and the surf grew choppy. Despite the rapidly changing forecast, two things remained constant: the outpouring of heartfelt sentiment and genuine good vibe.

For the third consecutive year, the Lyddy Family hosted “Light Up The Point”, a beachside event held in the Lantern Point community, the aim of which is to raise funds for the Swim Across the Sound Foundation. The gathering honors Thomas Peter Lyddy, who lost his battle with colon cancer in 2006. The “Swim” was there when the family needed it and this event now helps support the foundation’s goals. To date, it has raised over $15,000.

Attended by dozens of local residents, Lyddy family members, police and fire personnel and several town officials, the fundraiser featured a raffle, grilled food, drinks, an egg toss, dancing, hula hooping and live music provided by bands The Elwoods, Spiral City and Dr. B & The Brotherhood.

The Patch dropped in early evening as the weather had soured. The majority of guests were rain-soaked, yet still spirited and dancing the night away. One festive pair was Kaila O’Malley and Taylor Carr, who were hovering under one of several tents that had been set up to shelter party-goers.

“He was my godfather,” said Taylor, speaking about the late Tom Lyddy. “I’m so impressed with my cousins and how they pull this together every year. And we have such great friends and support.”

Asked what the event meant to her, Quinn Brawley, attending with several family members, said, “It means raising money to find a cure for cancer, to keep family alive. Tom was my mom’s cousin. Family means everything.”

Fairfielder Sharon Smith, on hand with several other town friends, said, “I’ve known the Lyddy Family for years. I’ve been to this every year and have to say that it’s one of the most inspiring events. I lost my mom to cancer when I was young – that’s one of the reasons why we’re here.”

No guest was more engaged and happier, though, than Kyle Lyddy, one of Tom’s sons, who marveled at the crowd and danced to the beats of Dr. B, the band closing out the event. While he didn’t want to be quoted and preferred to be modest, he did a lot of hand wringing, back slapping and praising as he moved from guest to guest, thrilled with the support generated.

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