Mitch-A-Palooza for Suicide Prevention

October 25, 2023 | Posted In AGRelevance
Alpha Gamma Rho members at Mitch-A-Palooza at University of Maryland

Published in SICKLE & SHEAF ➻ Summer 2023

   The brothers of the Alpha Theta Chapter of Alpha Gamma Rho at the University of Maryland-College Park continue to make efforts to save lives, raise awareness, and bring hope in memory of a brother lost to tragedy

   Alpha Theta Chapter hosted "Cornhole for a Cause," on April 14, 2023. More than two dozen teams competed in the Chapter's first-ever cornhole tournament that supported American Foundation for Suicide Prevention as well as the One Love Foundation.

Alpha Theta Chapter Members Following Alpha Gamma Rhodeo—COLLEGE PARK, MD. (2023)
Alpha Theta Chapter Members following Alpha Gamma Rhodeo—COLLEGE PARK, MD. (APR. 2023)

   On April 16, 2023, just two days after the cornhole bags finished flying, bull riders were getting airtime at the Alpha Theta Chapter House. Due to poor weather, the Chapter rescheduled their annual "Alpha Gamma Rhodeo," to the Sunday after "Cornhole for a Cause." The community came out in droves for the weekend-long festivities. Hundreds enjoyed cornhole, barbeque, mechanical bull rides, and brotherhood, all while supporting the American Foundation for Suicide Prevention.

Mother of Brother Gary “Mitch” Gryszkiewicz, Alpha Theta (Maryland), with Alpha Theta Chapter. Members at Mitch-a-palooza
"Momma Wanda" (center) and family at "Mitch-a-Palooza"—COLLEGE PARK, MD. (APR. 2023)

   The previous weekend, the chapter hosted "Mitch-a-Palooza," an event started after losing Brother Gary “Mitch” Gryszkiewicz, Alpha Theta (Maryland), to suicide on July 22, 2014. The annual event is an opportunity for brothers to get together and celebrate his life and his passion for the Chapter and Fraternity. Mitch’s mother, known to the chapter as "Momma Wanda," and his younger brother took part in the event. They read private notes from Brother Mitch, educated the brothers on the importance of their bond, and reminded them to be a helping hand in their communities to help slow down the rate of suicide in America.

   Together, Brother Mitch’s family and Fraternity took part in the American Foundation for Suicide Prevention's "Out of the Darkness Campus Walk," at the University of Maryland. With the chapter's support, these events raised more than $36,000 for suicide prevention during the 2022–23 academic year.

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