More than 1,000 people showed up to Freeport (Maine) High School for a memorial lacrosse game to raise money for the family of a teen who died jumping into a river, according to the Press Herald.
The game raised $18,000 for the family of Steel Crawford as 100 high school and college players from around New England participated and about 1,000 people watched.
“When I came up with this idea, I thought we were going to get 30 players and maybe 100 fans, but this was unbelievable,” Ryan Baker, a friend of Crawford, said to the Press Herald.
Crawford, 17, was a co-captain of the Freeport lacrosse team, according to WMTW8.
He died Aug. 9 when he jumped from a rope swing into the Saco River and “landed awkwardly in deep water,” according to Boston.com.
Two days after Crawford’s death, Baker woke up at 3 a.m. while sleeping on a friend’s couch and had the idea for the game, according to Boston.com. He and Crawford had initially been lacrosse rivals but developed a close relationship.
The idea took off, with athletes from schools including Boston University, the University of Rhode Island and high schools around Maine signing up, according to the Press Herald. Boston.com reported that Baker had to cap the game at 100 players because so many wanted to participate.
There was no admission fee to the game. Donations were accepted and t-shirts were available.
The game raised $18,000 for the family. Total, the GoFundMe page had raised more than $27,000 as of Monday evening.
The funds will be used for funeral expenses, and leftover money will go toward a scholarship fund in Crawford’s name, the outlets reported.