family

The Denny Mogan ALS Fundraiser at Burley Oak Brewing Company in Berlin on Sunday aims to relieve the financial burden of medical expenses on the family. Pictured, from left, are Kateryna, Jack, 5, Michael, 8, and Denny, who has been battling Bulbar Onset ALS since March.

(Sept. 11, 2020) Burley Oak Brewing Company in Berlin will hold a fundraiser on Sunday from 1-5 p.m. to support Denny Mogan and his family, following his terminal Lou Gehrig’s disease diagnosis.

Mogan, 40, was diagnosed with Bulbar Onset Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis (ALS), the most aggressive form of the nervous system disease, during the first week of March.

According to the National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke, individuals with Bulbar Onset usually notice speech or swallowing problems first.

Mogan reportedly began slurring his speech in November 2019 at an event at his restaurant, Mogan’s Oyster House on East Main Street in Salisbury.

He grew up in Salisbury and still lives there today with his wife, Kateryna, who teaches English as a second language in Worcester County public schools in Snow Hill.

They share two sons, ages 5 and 8.

Jayme Clarke, a close family friend who is organizing the fundraiser, said Mogan has a strong background in the hospitality industry, including stints at Harborside Bar & Grill on Harbor Road and Brass Balls Saloon on the Boardwalk in Ocean City.

He also served for years as a beer representative in Ocean City and Berlin for Evolution Craft Brewing Company.

The fundraiser at Burley Oak Brewing Company is part of a series of events primarily in Salisbury called Downtown for Denny to raise funds for medical expenses, their children’s educational funds and any other immediate or future needs. 

“With this being a terminal disease, there’s no surviving it,” Clarke said. “So, knowing that and knowing that [Kateryna’s] a school teacher that will become a single mom, we’re doing all the fundraising to really help them financially as much as we can.”

Mogan’s family and friends invite people to enjoy locally brewed beers, Uno Mas Tacos, fresh-shucked oysters from Shell & Barrel, a live auction and live music by Jack Bannon during the event.

J. L. Cropper Auctions from Ocean City will host the live auction, which will feature prizes from Sunset Grille, Seacrets and Fager’s Island, from 2-4 p.m.

Twenty percent of beer and food sales from Uno Mas Tacos will benefit the Mogan Family Fundraiser. All proceeds from the oyster sales will go toward the family as well.

Berlin-based George’s Mixes is donating products to every fundraising event, so 100 percent of proceeds will go to the Mogan family.

In addition, all proceeds from the Mogan Strong apparel sales will benefit the Mogans.

“The whole point of this fundraiser outside of Salisbury is to connect with all the people that really know the Mogans from the Ocean City area that haven’t had a chance to really be a part of anything,” Clarke said.

With limited space available, participants are being encouraged to reserve tables by calling Burley Oak Brewing Company at 443-513-4647.

shells

All are invited to leave messages for Denny Mogan on oysters through “The Drawings for Denny” program at Mogan’s Oyster House in Salisbury or at fundraising events. After Mogan reads the messages, the goal is to have his family throw the oysters back into the ocean like a “message in a bottle.”

As of Monday, only 14 tables were left. Tables seat up to six people.

With the ongoing pandemic, tables will be spaced properly, and all participants must wear face coverings.

Anyone who is not comfortable with attending the event because of coronavirus concerns or cannot stay long, may order carryout beer and food to support the Mogans.

The next fundraiser to support Mogan and his family is scheduled for Sept. 20 from 1-5 p.m. at Brew River Restaurant and Bar on West Main Street in Salisbury.

People can also support the family directly by donating to their GoFundMe account: https://www.gofundme.com/f/denny-mogan-family-alslou-gehrigs-disease?sharetype=teams&member=3933136&utm_medium=copy_link&utm_source=customer&utm_campaign=p_na+share-sheet&rcid=0a6a485f19de4232b54bda6422d91b3c.

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