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Crystal Lake native helps raise $1.3 million for University of Iowa’s children’s hospital

Alex Tyndall of Crystal Lake helped organize the University of Iowa’s annual Dance Marathon to raise funds for the university’s Stead Family Children’s Hospital.

Crystal Lake’s Alex Tyndall doesn’t think he’s a very good dancer. He’s mastered one TikTok dance, but he’s not one to just bust a move.

What he’s very good at is helping organize the University of Iowa’s annual Dance Marathon to raise funds for the university’s Stead Family Children’s Hospital.

Tyndall, 21, is a senior at the university majoring in accounting with a minor in psychology. He’s graduating in May with plans to attend graduate school. This year, he was a member of the finance committee for the 28th annual student-led Dance Marathon, which raised more than $1.3 million for the hospital.

Dance Marathon, the University of Iowa’s largest student organization, works to create special projects to provide emotional and financial support to families treated at Stead Family Children’s Hospital, with an emphasis on pediatric cancer and bone marrow transplant patients, school officials said. In addition to fundraising, the event celebrates the lives of survivors and recognizes those lost, officials said.

“Dance Marathon will continue to create so many miracles for our families. I am so glad that we all got to be a part of it together,” Anna Dodge, the executive director of DM28, said in a news release.

Since it started in 1995, Dance Marathon has raised more than $33 million, according to University of Iowa officials.

This year, the Dance Marathon was held virtually. The decision came a few weeks before the event in early February and was made to keep everyone healthy as the omicron variant peaked. It was especially important to keep children safe.

“We didn’t want to risk them getting sick,” Tyndall said.

The event, held in early February, included dancing, obviously, but also featured games, sketches and other fun activities, Tyndall said.

“You don’t have to be a good dancer,” he said.

Alex Tyndall of Crystal Lake helped organize the University of Iowa’s annual Dance Marathon to raise funds for the university’s Stead Family Children’s Hospital.

While Tyndall doesn’t do a lot of dancing, he can do the griddy, which, according to the Sporting News, was invented by a Louisiana State University student and went viral on Snapchat.

“That’s the one I’m semi-good at,” Tyndall said.

Tyndall became involved with Dance Marathon as a freshman. It was the first student organization that he joined. Tyndall also is a member of Beta Alpha Psi and the university’s marching band. He took on a leadership role with the Dance Marathon this year. The role required doing things like analytics and coming up with individual fundraising ideas.

He personally raised $1,200.

“It maybe a small sum, but it feels really good that I helped contribute to this and help some kid. It just feels really good to have that much of an impact,” Tyndall said. The experience “gives you an opportunity to do something for more than yourself and really feel like you are having an impact on the community.”

His parents, Adria and Erik, have supported his work with Dance Marathon since day one, said Tyndall, who moved to Crystal Lake at age 4 and graduated from Crystal Lake South High School. His parents, brother, Lucian,15, and sister, Lauryn, 14, still live here.

His family is “proud I’m doing something for a greater cause and helping someone in a really unique way,” he said.