Fundraiser held for Daniel Ellis and John Mackey

Published: Nov. 29, 2015 at 4:32 PM EST
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As the families of Richmond Police Officer, Daniel Ellis, and Jessamine County Paramedic, John Mackey, continue to deal with the tragic deaths of their loved ones, people in the bluegrass are letting them know they are not alone.

"I got a phone call from a police officer right after the tragedy in Richmond with Officer Ellis," says voice talent artist, Gary Michaels. "They asked me if I would put something together for the families and I said absolutely."

Michaels stood behind his words and set up a fundraiser at Horseshoes' Kentucky Grill in Lexington to help support the families of Daniel Ellis, John Mackey, and for the families of all fallen heroes.

"We decided to go with both families, especially the Mackey family, because we heard they are not getting any benefits," says Michaels.

The fundraiser goes until midnight and features several music acts throughout the day, including country music artist Aaron Tippin who kicked off the benefit. There's also a silent auction with many items including a signed poster from Coach Cal and an autographed guitar from Brooks and Dunn. Dozens of people have showed up, including the family of John Mackey. Several first responders like Otis Cveticanin are also on hand. Cveticanin says events like these are heart-warming.

"It makes you feel good that there's still people that value us as much as we value them."

Michaels says he's grateful for all those who have showed up. He adds as soon as the benefit ends that he'll have one goal in mind.

"I'll make sure that every nickel we raise today will go to both of those families."

Michaels adds that they will also be giving some of today's proceeds to the Kentucky Law Enforcement Memorial Foundation which takes care of the families of all the fallen officers from across the state.