It’s one thing for a business to talk about its commitment to “community,” whatever that may mean.

But people pay closer attention (and assign much more weight) to action.

In 2007, when I began providing public relations support to the Burr Ridge and Northbrook locations for Five Seasons Family Sports Club, one of the core principles of its parent company, Corporex, was to be a strong resource for the communities where it did business.

In the half-decade since that point, it has been gratifying to see that principle is not some platitude. Instead, it takes shape in the form of numerous efforts to raise money and awareness for a range of worthy causes.

Often, those initiatives have to do with health–a logical tie-in, given the club’s central function as a place where people pursue better fitness and overall wellness. The most current example is an Aug. 4 event coming up at the Northbrook facility, 1300 Techny Road.

Dubbed the Patrick Stein Blues Jam FUNraiser, the occasion supports the former captain of the Loyola Academy boys’ water polo and swim teams. In October 2010, as a vibrant, athletic 17-year-old, Patrick suffered a brain aneurysm.

During a subsquent surgery, he suffered a stroke that left him in need of round-the-clock medical care. His perseverance has inspired many ever since, and among other stories about his effect on others, one must-read piece is a feature by Joe Coughlin of The Winnetka Current.

Coughlin’s piece describes Loyola’s emotional win over St. Ignatius during Patrick’s first return to the school, six months after his aneurysm and stroke.

I am honored to help Five Seasons raise awareness, and money, to come alongside the Stein family.

For me, this story has an especially personal aspect: my mother suffered a brain aneurysm in November 1972, shortly after her 37th birthday. She fell into a coma and was operated on 15 days after the aneurysm.

Through the grace of God, she came home 25 days later, on New Year’s Day 1973. Aside from some minor issues–for instance, she had to switch from writing with her right hand to her left–she had a full recovery and has now lived for nearly 40 additional years.

For those who are not able to attend the FUNraiser on Aug. 4, donations can be made payable to Sister Paulanne’s Needy Family Fund (write “Patrick Stein” in the memo). The fund’s mailing address is c/o Our Lady of Perpetual Help, 1775 Grove St., Glenview, IL 60025.

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