PORT CLINTON, Ohio (WJW) — Public calling hours were held on Saturday in Port Clinton for 14-year-old Harley Dilly.
Pink ribbons adorned Gerner-Wolf-Walker Funeral home outside while a steady stream of mourners wrapped their arms around Harley’s family inside.
“I just hugged her and told her if there’s anything I can do to help let me know,” said Christine Lundy. “What can take that kind of pain away?”
Police said the high school freshman died in a bizarre accident and was found inside of a chimney across the street from his home.
While he was missing, hundreds of volunteers searched tirelessly for him.
Many of those same volunteers, including Megan Lenthe, organized a memorial luncheon, which was held at a church hall next to the funeral home.
“This has been extremely difficult for the community,” said Lenthe. “We’re gathering to give Harley the most amazing send-off we can.”
The gathering was designed to give people an opportunity to talk and begin the healing process, with many businesses donating food and refreshments.
Harley volunteered as a Salvation Army bell ringer and also liked to leave pennies throughout town, so picture cards with a penny attached were given out to everyone.
“He’d walk around town and drop pocket change to try to brighten up somebody’s day; everyone thinks they found a lucky penny,” said Marc Wolfe.
Wolfe had helped collect money for a reward and is now working with other volunteers on establishing a 501C3 scholarship fund called Harley’s Project 236.
The 236 was chosen because during the search efforts a gentleman donated all of the money he had, which was $2.36 in change.
“If we have anything to say about it, good will come out of this through our organization and everyone helping us,” said Wolfe.