THORNTON, Colo. — A local middle school is giving back to the family of a little boy killed last year in a road rage shooting.
This week, Rocky Top Middle School, in the Adams 12 school district, kicks off its annual fundraiser, “Grizzlies Give Back.” For the last eight years, the school has raised money for families of students with life-threatening health issues with an annual week of philanthropy. Over the years, money raised has helped hundreds of families with everything from medical costs to groceries, and from backpacks to winter coats.
This year, they’re doing something different, to help honor the legacy of Vaughn Bigelow. He would’ve been in the 8th grade at Rocky Top this year, but the 13 year old died after a road rage shooting in Westminster in June 2018 that also wounded his mother, brother and a bystander.
Vaughn’s family recently started a non-profit charity called “Big Waves.”
“One of the reasons it’s called ‘Big Waves,’ Meghan (Vaughn’s mom) will tell you, is because she always talked about his smile. A very energetic smile. That’s the V-E-S in ‘waves.’ So wearing a very energetic smile is what she always used to say about him, and his smile always was contagious. Huge smile,” said Chelsea Behanna, Principal at Rocky Top Middle School.
The “Big Waves” foundation has a couple of goals: first, to provide a water polo scholarship to a graduating senior, because Vaughn loved water polo. The charity also hopes to support organizations and legislation promoting what they call common-sense gun regulations.