Mady’s Angels…Don’t cry because its over, Smile because it happened…
by Mark Spector
What continues to amaze me daily, are the bonds we forge by simply showing up to practice our chosen craft.
Bonds forged from:
Being thrown together for a mind-numbing, extended World Tour.
In and through every venue, hall, shed, festival and trench known and previously undiscovered. Enduring more load-ins & outs than it takes for the full gestation of an embryonic pachyderm, becoming so intimate with the bad art hanging in chain-hotel rooms that you can begin to recognize “The Manfred Rottatelli School of Art By The Pound”, have eaten so much catering that you can’t remember that all food doesn’t come from a steam table, discover whole technologies have evolved into being.
And when you do, finally, make it home…the family forgets to set you a place at the holiday table..
Oh, you’re here?
A week sentenced to the One-Off from Hell.
Where the client or gods of production have innocently (or not) conspired to push us to our limits. We stubbornly get past every obstacle,in the end giving them exactly what they envisioned.
To their eye, we as a crew, made it looked easy. Good thing their hearing was impaired by the PA and vision dimmed by the stunning lack of a full compliment with which to hang the whole plot.
The Gig from Heaven.
Think more gear than you know what to do with and it all works right out of the case. On a location which has temperate, humidity-free beaches, ample “comped” adult beverages,fine linen/lush towels in the room you secretly believe they made a serious mistake giving you the keys to but you’re not saying a word and massive Per Diem that you have no need to spend. And all with an production team and artist who’s a dream to work with.
Or the Bro-mance connection.
Made during a single day’s event from the In to the Out.
That Brother/Sister from ‘nother Mother you didn’t know you had and now, will never be without.
What I believe we’d agree to as a collective is this…
When at the end of that span of time when we part, it’s almost always as friends for life.
As in, here are the keys to my workbox, car, girl/boyfriend or my apartment for the next time you’re in town and I’m still out.
Occasionally we find we part, maybe not so much as friends but with a professional “Gotta-give-it-to-you begrudging respect for having survived together and while I’m not invitin’ you to my BBQ Bro’… Here, have a brew for the road”.
How can we can accomplish this?
As fractured and transient this industry is, in all it’s forms and genre’s?
Because we come together, pursuing a unique common goal with a highly specialized, hard-won skill set that presents itself to us as a secret brother/sisterhood.
We have triumphed together from the moment the truck doors or bays were cracked open in dawn’s light.
On into “House Lights Out-GO!” or “In 3, 2, 1-We’re on the Air”.
On past the applause,
House lights up…
The fade to black..
On into the last case up the ramp..
Every cable coiled, tied and tossed into the belly bays..
The truck or bay doors secured once again perhaps in another dawns first light…
To get on down the road until the next one.
As a crew…
As a community…
And most importantly,
I’m sharing with you all something about one of our own. Normally, I have no doubts he wouldn’t ever speak to me again after the platitudes and information that follows. But there are times when one must imperil a friendship to do a greater good and this is one of those times.
M.J. Law III is one of the most unassuming, humble and private men I’ve ever encountered. He rarely, if ever, thinks of himself, is generous to a fault with his time, talent, equipment and has an honest desire to have the world become a better place. He is now involved in a cause where he invites our participation, but I say it needs and demands our attention. This cause is one that has emanated from the most unspeakable tragedy that a parent can experience; the loss of a child.
M.J. is a pretty amazing human… he has had as many lives as you or I.. PA & RF gear company owner, audio equipment dealer, sought-after and enormously talented Television Audio Assist, Champion downhill skier & snowboarder, a stunningly talented drummer who once had a band signed to a major label which had a high-rotation video or 2 on MTV, Devoted Husband to Laura Arrington Law and a Loving Father.
He’s as proud of and as in love with his children as any man can be. And because of that pride and love, has somehow, along with Laura and 16 year-old son Malcom Law IV, survived the tragic loss of their 13 year old daughter, Madyson Brendyl Law on December 21, 2010.
Yes, a story we’ve heard before and one that happens unfortunately all too readily on this planet but you seemingly callous pirates one and all, there IS a difference so stay with me on this. Besides, we’re reading about one of our OWN.
Madyson Law was one amazing young teenager who inherited from her parents, the concept and desire to care for others. She had the innate sense of “Pay It Forward”. Mady had more compassion and selflessness in her brief 13 years than most people express in their entire lifetime. She was the type of person who looked to be involved. She would volunteer for a variety of fundraising and charity events for groups such as Bushkill Outreach, Joey’s Eagles, Operation Smile Relay for Life and Walk for Hunger just to name a few. Mady was the type of person who would save up her allowance and simply give it away to a multitude of causes. What typical 13 year old does that?
She was the type of person we should all strive to be. She was an exceptional daughter, sister, friend and student.
After Mady’s passing, The Law family established “Mady’s Angel’s” to honor and memorialize her passion and dedication in helping others and her commitment to “Paying It Forward”. Mady’s Angels goals include awarding scholarships to local students and providing contributions to local charities and causes that were supported by Madyson.
In 2011, Mady’s Angels raised over $14,000 and distributed those funds for medical assistance, medical research, animal welfare, scholarships, community outreach and family bereavement support.
In the coming weeks, I’ll be sharing with you ways that we, as a community, can support and promote Mady’s Angels. To celebrate worldwide her goal of Paying It Forward.
And wait until you see the swag- hoodies, t-shirts, golf shirts, sweats, lanyards and decals. You may have already seen it here in the States and overseas.
In all that we do, having Mady’s angel to keep watch over us couldn’t be a bad thing.