Three years after his only child was killed by her mother, his wife at the time, and just months after Kimberly Fry was sent to prison for a long, long time. Tim Fry is moving forward. Part of that new life, is honoring young Camden's memory.
It's been almost three years since Tim Fry lost his only child. He say's the pain, will never go away.
"Just got to put one foot in front of the other, keep moving forward," said Tim.
Camden is never very far from Tim, she is very much alive in his every day life.
Tim points to a tattoo on his arm, "This is actually from the Jimi Hendrix song, "Fly on my Sweet Angel."
Tim says he and his daughter shared a love of music, among other things.
"We'd go to the beach, we'd go for hikes, we'd go biking, we did all sorts of things, she was probably my best friend at the time," he said.
Camden's memory is alive through Tim's dogs; Ned, Mac, and Lexi. Mac and Ned, is Camden spelled backwards. Lexi, is her middle name, Alexis. But even with all the reminders, Tim says it was the people in his life who pulled him up from his darkest moments, and still do. Tim is newly engaged to his high school crush, Annette Rose. The two connected after Annette reached out to Tim to offer her support.
Rose says, "There was a part of me in the beginning that did want to help, you know I felt bad just like everybody else did, but what attracted me in our first conversation, was his strength."
Annette never knew Camden, but it was she, who started the annual fundraiser in Camden's memory.
"I never want him to feel that because he's moving on, he's moving on without her, because he's not, she's here, just in a different way," explained Annette.
Every year since Camden's death, Town Line Farm in Chepachet is transformed into a child's dream. There's music, a Bar-B-Que, jump houses, and this year, there will even be a petting zoo. They are all things Camden loved.
Tim says, "Instead of just me alone thinking about her and how great she was, we get to have a great day."
At the site of the fundraiser, Tim points to where everything will be set up. His excitement is evident, but when the day of the fundraiser comes, he says he'll stay behind the scenes, wishing Camden was there to celebrate with him.
"It's a new normal, it's a new life that you have to get used to, you know realizing that that old life just never goes away. It's always there, it's never out of your thoughts and mind, but now there's a new sense of normal that you have to go forward with, a different life."
I asked Tim, "and your bringing Camden with you?"
Tim replied, "trying, she'll never be very far from me ever."
The Camden Fry Memorial Fund 3rd Annual BBQ is on August 18th from 2pm to 8pm. The event will be at Town Line Farm in Chepachet, RI.
The fundraiser will feature a variety of local entertainment including Steve Smith and The Nakeds and acoustic sensation Steve Malec.
Tickets are 10 dollars per person. Children under 8 years old are free. Food from local restaurants will be available to purchase at the event.
All proceeds from the BBQ will benefit:
-Southern Rhode Island Youth Hockey Association: The funds raised will go towards a scholarship for a young athlete to participate in the sport Camden loved.
-The Humane Society of The United States
For more information contact Kristen Dean at Kristen@camsfund.org.