Oak Park community gathers together for Luc Bodden Day of Compassion Sept. 14

Oak Park High School students sign a pledge in honor of Luc Bodden

The Talon

Oak Park High School students sign a pledge in honor of Luc Bodden

Two years ago, a member of the Oak Park community and supporter of the Oak Park High School’s boy’s basketball and football team passed away from sickle cell disease, a genetic mutation that restricts the function of the red blood cells. At the age of 10, Luc Bodden contracted a post-operative infection and died on Sept. 14, 2016. This former Red Oak student was known to his peers for his optimistic fighting.

To commemorate Bodden’s involvement within Oak Park, the Luc Bodden Day of Compassion was created for those who stand alongside Bodden with Loving, Understanding, Caring, Sympathetic, Thoughtful, Respectful, Open-minded, coNsiderate and Grateful support. This 10-year-old inspired many to keep fighting for their passions and achieve their dreams.

“Going to Oak Park football games” was Bodden’s favorite pastime because he “got into it cause he liked football a lot.”

Freshman Jack Herold, a close family friend to the Boddens, reminisced on Luc Bodden’s redeeming qualities.

“He was so open to everyone and so companionate,” Herold said. “At one point it was almost like I was his older brother.”

Bodden was known for his love of sports, according to Herold, and his devotion and affection for sports uplifted the spirits of his family, friends, and surrounding community members. He attended every Oak Park football and basketball game he could and became the ball boy for the football team in 2015. In honor of his remembrance, Sept. 14 has been dedicated to Bodden’s lasting memory among the people of Oak Park.

The Talon
Oak Park High School students sign a pledge in honor of Luc Bodden

“He eats, breathes and loves everything about the game!” his mom Stacey said to the UCLA children’s hospital.

To perpetuate Luc Bodden’s memory, his family created the LucStrong Foundation. The goal of the nonprofit is to mitigate families’ financial burdens of treating sickle cell disease.

“I think [the LucStrong Foundation] is helpful because it helps families going through the same thing [the Bodden family] had to go through,” Herold said.

Luc Bodden’s legacy lives on in the hearts of those who knew him, and those who receive help through his name.

“I think it keeps [Luc Bodden Day] going and helps people learn more about themselves a little bit,” said Herold.