‘The Wiz star’ Paris Bennett headlines 14th CFMF Benefit!

It’s a tradition like no other — the annual Carol Fitzgerald Memorial Fund Benefit!

It was just 15 years ago on April 10 that Carol Fitzgerald, the wife of columnist Larry Fitzgerald, passed away after a courageous battle with breast cancer.

Her two sons, Larry Jr. and Marcus were still in school, one in college and the other in high school. The Fitzgerald men teamed up and accepted the challenge to carry on the family goals and fight for what was important to Carol.

In 2004, Larry started his foundation, the Carol Fitzgerald Memorial Fund (CFMF). The purpose was to raise money to help fight against breast cancer, and HIV/AIDS, and support urban education.

Paris Bennett headlines 14th CFMF Benefit! Courtesy of Paris Bennett

Both Larry Jr. and Marcus went on to graduate from high school and college, Larry Jr. from University of Phoenix and Marcus from Holy Angels and Marshall University. Larry Jr., one of the NFL’s biggest stars now in his 14th season in the league, started his own foundation, the Larry Fitzgerald First Down Fund.

Combined, the two organizations have raised over $3 million dollars, and distributed the funds throughout the Twin Cities, Phoenix communities, and across the country to worthy nonprofit organizations with programs designed to fight breast cancer and HIV/AIDS and support urban education.

Larry Fitzgerald, now in his 40th year as one of the country’s most-respected sports journalist and fathers, is the only sports writer in history to cover his own son in a Super Bowl-XLIII. Larry Jr., a 10-year Pro Bowler and 2017 NFL Man of the Year, also captured the prestigious AT&T Pebble Beach-Pro-Am with PGA Pro Kevin Streelman in February of 2018.

The Fitzgerald men will once again team up to lead CFMF Benefit Weekend. On Friday, April 6, actress-songbird Paris Bennett (and her band) of The Wiz and American Idol fame will headline a dinner gala at the Minneapolis Event Center from 6-9 pm.

Popular comedic personality Shed-G will serve as emcee, and Vikings stars will also be on hand featuring a live silent auction with prized sports memorabilia, all to help raise money for the Fitzgerald men’s continuing mission of helping others. For tickets and table information, visit www.cfmf.eventbrite.com or call 612-770-4575.

The fun will continue Saturday, April 7 from 12:30-3:30 pm with the Carol Fitzgerald Celebration at Martin Luther King Center, 4055 Nicollet Ave., in South Minneapolis. The event will feature entertainment by KMOJ’s Chaz Millionaire, a luncheon buffet by Fay’s Homestyle Catering, and an award ceremony recognizing excellence in HIV/AIDS prevention, breast cancer awareness and urban Education.

For $20 donation, Pro Bowl star Larry Fitzgerald, Jr. will hold an official autograph fundraising session to benefit the Carol Fitzgerald Memorial Fund.