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‘Something really special:’ Fundraiser held for snowmobilers who died after plunging into lake

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SUSSEX -- A mom-and-pop diner in Sussex was packed with people from all over Saturday, Jan. 25, ordering biscuits and gravy to raise money for two families who lost loved ones in a tragic snowmobiling incident in Oneida County Jan. 5.

Savannah Landphier

"This is something really special," said Savannah Landphier, cousin of Kurtis Shernell. "Kurt would come in here all the time, and it would be exciting for me because he's family and stuff."

On Saturday, entrees at M&M Restaurant came with a side of compassion for two men who lost their lives too soon.

Roger Shernell

"It was a reach out that we really needed," said Roger Shernell, father of Kurtis Shernell.

Three snowmobilers hit thin ice and plunged into Lake Nokomis in Oneida County on Jan. 5. One of them, 26-year-old Austin Zillmer, was able to make it out of the water alive. The other two -- David Erdman, 31, and Kurtis Shernell, 27 -- died.

Kurt Shernell and David Erdman

"It's been up and down, hills and valleys, you know?" said Roger Shernell. "There was so much involved in what happened at such a young age."

All sales of biscuits and gravy at M&M Restaurant, a place the two grew up going to, were donated Saturday to the families of the young men who died. It's something family members said would help them heal.

M&M Restaurant

"How many people like, really want to help this cause," said Landphier. "I think it's just amazing."

If you couldn't make it to Saturday's fundraiser but would like to donate, you can do so through M&M Restaurant.

CLICK HERE for contact information.

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