Faced with Unthinkable Tragedy, Entertainment Journalist Creates ‘Stolen Moment’ Campaign

SavannahFundly_04_07Larry Carroll, who as a west coast MTV.com journalist buttressed the earliest days of the Twilight franchise with #TwilightTuesdays, shared on Friday via Facebook some absolutely devastating personal news: the sudden death of his two-year-old daughter. And yet, somehow, some way, Carroll quickly erected that same day a powerful and astonishing tribute to her spunky life spirit.

Carroll, who has also covered Hollywood for E! Online, MSN and Xbox, set up a Fundly campaign in his daughter’s honor. The “Stolen Moment” call for donations quickly exceeded its target goal through the support of journalist colleagues, friends, neighbors and strangers. From Carroll’s campaign introduction:

I’m feeling very powerless right now… The only way I can handle this powerlessness, I figure, is with the power to give someone else joy.

So, here’s my idea: If you’d like to make a donation in Savannah’s name – any size – please do it here. And my dream is to take every penny of those donations, locate a special little girl somewhere in the world – and give her and her family the “Stolen Moment” that we’ll never be able to make with our baby Savannah.

I will find a family somewhere – someone I have never met before and has no connection to anyone I know – and help them make a Stolen Moment. The only three requirements are that they have a little girl, that they very clearly love her, and that they don’t have the financial means to typically do this sort of thing.

Perhaps we can send them to Disneyland, and get them the greatest hotel room ever. Perhaps we could fly them somewhere. I want to give some little person a moment with her Mom and Dad that she’ll remember forever – a moment that they would never have without us doing this.

FishbowlNY thought long and hard about whether it was appropriate to write an item relating the Carrolls’ loss. In the end, we felt that Larry’s Fundly campaign was such an inspiring and humbling idea that it deserved to be shared. Our deepest condolences to this stand-up Lowell, MA native, his wife Carrie and all immediate family.

Update (April 8):
Due to the exceedingly generous and overwhelming response to the Fundly campaign, Carroll explained Monday that all funds beyond the original stated goal of $10,000 will be earmarked for a lucky girl’s future college education. From his Facebook post:

Can we pay for one year of her schooling? Two? I don’t know, but it makes me smile when I think about attending some little girl’s college graduation some day, holding my wife’s hand and remembering Savannah. And right now, smiles are hard to come by.

Thank you, thank you, thank you to everyone who has donated – or even simply hugged their child in remembrance of mine. The “Stolen Moment” campaign has 57 days remaining, and I will leave it up that whole time.

I just wanted to be upfront and let you know – at this point you’re donating to permanently impact some little girl’s life. She’s out there, and we’re gonna give her the kind of education every child deserves. If you choose to continue to share, donate and support the Fund… Well, thank you from the bottom of my heart for all those tiny little hugs. For brief fleeting moments, they remind me of the tiny hug from Savvy that I’d give anything to once again receive.

Update (June 3):
The Fundly campaign has come to a close. The final tally is a whopping $96,258.

@hollywoodspin rhorgan@gmail.com Richard Horgan is co-editor of Fishbowl.
Publish date: April 7, 2014 https://dev.adweek.com/digital/larry-carroll-fundly-campaign/ © 2020 Adweek, LLC. - All Rights Reserved and NOT FOR REPRINT