Young Cancer Victim Honored With His Own Burger Recipe [PHOTOS]
When 9-year-old Mark Levine was diagnosed with cancer in 2009, he spent a lot of time in and out of hospitals receiving treatment. It was during one of those visits that the Levine family came in contact with The Ashley Lauren Foundation -- a non-profit founded by Monica Vermeulen, whose own daughter is a cancer survivor. The organization provides help and hope to sick kids, and has even arranged for some of them to meet their celebrity heroes.
Mark was a foodie, and one of his idols was Food Network star Bobby Flay. With help from many people, including 94.3 DJ Lou Russo, Flay spent an entire day with Mark before the little boy sadly passed away in May of last year.
Mark's love of burgers led him to create his own recipe that he dubbed "The Mark the Shark Burger." And that's where yet another incredibly kind-hearted radio personality from 94.3 The Point, Matt Ryan, came in. Working with Monica, Matt enlisted the help of Mike Jurusz, the executive chef at 709 Restaurant in Point Pleasant Beach, NJ, to put "The Mark the Shark Burger" on the menu to honor the brave little boy -- and to surprise his parents.
Monica and I wanted to make the preparation of this burger special, so she invited Mark’s parents to the restaurant for a simple lunch. I made special menu inserts and coached 709’s amazing staff to pull off this surprise. As Mark’s family sat down with Monica and her husband, they were presented with the menu. At that moment Mark’s dream had come true, his own burger was a menu special at a restaurant and his parents would be the first to taste it. It was the first time I had ever seen loved ones make an instant connection through food."
Here's how you can have the chance to taste Mark's creation too and help raise money for a great cause while you're at it.
On Friday, January 27th from noon til closing time, "The Mark the Shark Burger" will be the only special on 709 Restaurant's menu. All proceeds from the sale of the burger will go directly to The Ashley Lauren Foundation to help the organization continue their amazing work.
And if you can't swing by? No worries. You can always make a direct donation to the foundation.
[via 94.3 The Point]