Reporting Bill Hudson
ST. PAUL (WCCO) — At Willy’s American Guitars in St. Paul, Mark Schneider shows off some slide licks on his vintage Gibson. For him, playing the blues is very raw and deeply heartfelt.
Slain Lake City police officer Shawn Schneider, killed last December while responding to a young woman’s call for help, was Mark’s nephew and godson.
“When you dial 911, you have a shield come protect you whether you are good, bad or ugly. In this case, the shield saved a young lady and we lost our nephew,” said Mark Schneider.
The intense mourning that followed December’s shocking tragedy will now turn to musicians to help heal the hurt. On Saturday, a dozen top bands from around Minnesota will donate their time and talents to help raise funds for the officer’s wife, Brittany, and the couple’s three young children.
“It’s time to turn the page and look ahead,” said Mark Schneider. “We’ve had 40 days of grieving and now let’s have a celebration!”
While it’s hard to use that term, Mark Schneider hopes the non-stop musical benefit will celebrate the life of such a brave and well-liked young father and police officer.
The event begins around 2:30 p.m. at the Mayo Civic Center in Rochester with a group of Twin Cities attorneys called Rusty Rebar. They will be followed by Big Bob Skoggin, of Dr. Mombo’s Combos fame. Then, the reggae rock group from Rochester, Key Lime Special will perform.
Band members say they were deeply touched by the tragedy and have many close friends who were close to Shawn.
Former Minnesota Congressman Tim Penny’s band, The Pumper, The Peddler and the Politician will appear, as well as a reunion band of local Rochester musicians, including Mark Schneider.
Well-known recording artist Mick Sterling kicks it into high gear around 8 p.m.. Completing the evening line-up will be the Moose Knuckle Brothers, Brandon Scott Sellner and the Austin Stranglers, followed by the nightcap group, Shawn Ogden and Bad Logic.
It’s a lineup of talented musicians coming together for a greater good — to step in where a brave and fallen father no longer can.
“This is how we feel as musicians. We take care of our own and do this for Shawn and the family,” said Mark Schneider.
The public is invited to the event, which is not charging an admission to attend, but does ask for a “thoughtful donation” at the door.
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