Mallery Muenzenberger and her three-year-old son Major Harris were buried last month, but their family is still facing challenges.
To assist the family with funeral expenses and legal fees, a fundraiser has been scheduled for Saturday, Dec. 18 from noon to 7 p.m. at Fox Hollow Banquet Hall, located at N3287 Hwy. OA in Barre Mills.
Bruce Muenzenberger, Mallery’s uncle, said offers of help have been coming in since Mallery and Major died.
“There are a lot of people who want to help and support us in this tragedy,” he said. “People feel terrible and want to help.”
Mallery, 25, raised her three-year-old son in Onalaska before the two went missing in October. Mallery was found dead of a gunshot wound in Milwaukee Oct. 14, and Major was found dead a week later in Milwaukee after a statewide Amber Alert was issued.
Milwaukee police have made several arrests related to the homicides, but prosecutors have yet to file any charges.
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Mallery was buried in West Salem. Her family wanted Major buried next to her, but a dispute over the burial arose between the Muenzenberger family and Major’s biological father, Carlton Harris. Major was buried in Madison at his father’s insistence.
“As difficult as it was for us to be together knowing Major’s body is continuing to be held in waiting, we know in our hearts that Major and Mallery are together in God’s hands,” the family wrote in an Oct. 26 statement. “We will continue to hold on to the hope that Carlton Harris makes the right decision as he originally announced to the world, to allow this child to be buried beside his mother.”
Bruce Muenzenberger described Mallery as a devoted mother with a positive outlook on life.
“Every time I saw Mallery, she had the biggest smile on her face — she had a beautiful smile,” he said. “She loved Major. That was her life.”
The fundraiser features auctions and raffles with prizes that include a Mathews Archery V3 bow, authentic Packers and Badgers helmets, quilts and restaurant gift cards. There will also be food, beverages and a bake sale.
Organizers are reaching out to businesses for donations, and baskets are being sought to put together donations that are received.
Donations can be made to the Mallery Muenzenberger benefit and dropped off at any Altra Federal Credit Union location.
Bruce Muenzenberger said his family is grateful to people who have offered their assistance and support.
“We thank everyone who has offered to help,” he said. “If people want to help, come to the fundraiser.”