Mother’s Day fundraiser set for VHS student who lost her mom in tragic accident

Michele Ross, left, with daughter Jessica.

Michele Ross, left, with daughter Jessica.

A Mother’s Day fundraising event will be held May 8 at Lake Miona Recreation Center to celebrate the life of Michele Ross and support her daughter Jessica, a senior at the Villages High School.

Michele Ross died tragically in an automobile accident in September. You can read more about the accident HERE. She was a former staffer at MVP who later founded a house-cleaning company. Her close friend, Lisa Coan, who has been an entertainer and singer in The Villages for 10 years, is coordinating the Mother’s Day event in honor of her friend of more than 20 years. The event is a show of support for Jessica, who will be in attendance. Coan said she and her daughter Cassandra are like family with Jessica and have been supporting her in any way they can.

Coan remembers Jessica’s mother as a “very creative, very talented person.”

“She was a total animal advocate and people person,” said Coan.

She described Ross as “a protective mama bear.” She said that everything Ross did in her life was for Jessica

Coan said Ross was a very strong person and passed her strength and independence to Jessica.

“You could not mistake her for a weak person,” Coan said.

The response and support for the benefit event have been incredible, Coan said.

She not only gives major kudos to The Villages, but also VHS for helping Jessica through her senior year and Sandra Pelton of Lady Lake for providing a home for Jessica.

Just like her mother, who was a creative soul with a strong interest in graphic arts, Jessica has a strong interest in the same field, hoping to work in film editing.

She had hoped to attend Full Sail University, but due to financial constraints, she intends to attend College of Central Florida in Ocala for the next two years.

She will live with Lisa and Cassandra, who is currently a student at Central Florida.

All proceeds from the event will go toward buying Jessica her own vehicle so she can easily travel from school and work without depending on anyone for a ride. Money left over is intended to go toward furthering Jessica’s education as well.

Entertainment at the benefit will include Coan, Suzie Casta, along with a Blues Brothers tribute act and Richie Q.

The event is from 3 to 5 p.m. May 8 and is $20 per person. Anyone interested may call Lisa Coan at (954) 242-5459 or email agreatfind998@aol.com to reserve seats or tables.

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