Access to Mental Wellness information and services can be limited, but it shouldn’t be. There are so many people who are affected by mental health and suffer in silence because they don’t know what to do or who to reach out too. Programs like the Max Marvin Foundation are very important in bringing more awareness to Mental Wellness. Max was an energetic, outgoing kid who left us way to soon. This foundation will help the memories of Max live on, while educating communities on Mental Wellness. Everyone deserves to be truly happy and know it’s okay to ask for help.
Max was right around three years old when we met. I was invited up to the Angle to spend the weekend with Izzy and his family. We were greeted at the dock by a beautiful boy with bright blonde hair. He had a huge smile and took control of the situation around him like a seasoned veteran. Tying up the boat. Laughing at the jokes. Getting in on the teasing going back and forth. Giving instructions on how to drive the four-wheeler and Sea-Doo and also laughing his head off when I crashed and burned on the rope swing. This was the same Max I would meet every time in the future. The only thing that changed was his height and hair length. He still kept that same smile and magic in his eyes that he had when he was a boy. Always quick to laugh and poke fun with his friends. He was an old soul; how else can a boy be in a wedding party with all mid-twenty-somethings and then fit right in just as well on every fishing trip with grown men? The bond between Max and his Grandpa Jack was something that could only be experienced and not described. He was a special person to a lot of people and I’m sorry I never had the chance to tell him that. I, like many others, wish we had more time. He will be remembered and thought of often. I hope he can rest well.
I whole heartedly support the Max Foundation’s efforts to raise awareness of and bring attention to mental wellness. There is zero shame in asking for help and it’s imperative that we break the negative stigma associated with mental health. When someone breaks a bone, they immediately seek help; I look forward to the day where this is true for not just the physical pain, but the mental and emotional pain as well.
These efforts that the Max Foundation will spearhead and bring to the youth are crucial for helping kids, and adults, understand the battle and then successfully fight it. Every child needs to know they are loved, valued, and significant. I stand alongside the Max Foundation to let all kids know they’re not alone and we’ll fight together for the mental well being of all.
I first met Max when TJ Oshie brought me up to the annual Warroad golf tournament. I was greeted by Max and Izzy when we first got there. Max and Iz were my fishing guides for the day and for my first time actually fishing for more than a few hours. I had a blast with him. We both jumped in the lake even though it was pretty cold but we had fun with it. The next year he got his own boat and was my fishing guide again, and of course it was a fun time. Max always had a smile on his face and we always had some good laugh. We formed a pretty good friendship over a couple years. I was heartbroken when I got the news about Max. Mental wellness is something that a lot of people fight. It’s okay to get help. I believe mental wellness needs more attention to help others in this world that are struggling.
My bubby, my fishing buddy, my hunting partner, my little brother, my big brother, my best friend.
For the most
I don’t have you right now but I sure do have a lot of great memories like the day you, me, Dave and Grandpa Loren caught 224 walleyes together. Days like those I will never forget and days like those are what will keep me going.
Three days ago we were getting a list together of all the tackle we needed for this summer. We said we were going to catch so many fish it was going to be a record year. Well, I know I can’t have that record year without you Maxie, but I’m sure going to try.
You made work so much fun, Marv. I don’t know many people I can belly laugh with at 8:00 AM mopping floors at Izzys. I don’t know who can make me laugh at 8:00 AM in general. But I do know that I couldn’t have asked for a better brother.
Bottom line, you’re fun to be around Max and I think everyone in this room can agree.
I can’t wait to see you again Max, we’re going to catch that muskie you’ve been trying to get me on for the last four years.
I love you to Kenora and back, in the rain.
You will always be my best bubby.
I love you so much, Lisa
Max’s Story (Lisa Marvin)
I feel like trying to tell my brother’s story in a few short paragraphs is tough, almost impossible. For one, it would be hard to express all of his qualities, the experiences we had together and just the kind-hearted guy that he was. Two, there is a part of him that nobody knew about.
Max is the kind of guy that you wanted to be around because it was rare to catch him in a bad mood. I honestly can’t remember a time that he was mad at me, If I did something he didn’t like he would just give me a look and shake his head. He was pretty easy going; growing up with two older sisters could’ve played a part in that. He was the kind of guy that would go fishing with 80-year olds and learn all the tricks, take a 4-year old out to catch their very first fish and everything in between. He’d go skating with the older guys and then bring a little kid to the rink to teach them how to skate. He’d spend months getting ready for hunting season and let the 14-year-old girl he brought hunting shoot the biggest deer he’d ever had a chance at. He was a very likeable guy with a lot of friends.
Max played hockey his whole life, just like most of us do in Warroad. He was good at it, too. He worked hard, enjoyed going to the rink, and made his teammate’s laugh. He was the kind of guy you want on your team. In the fall he would hunt deer, geese, bear, whatever he could. He liked to learn about it all. He played baseball and ice fished but it was no secret that fishing on Lake of the Woods made his eyes light up a little more. In the fall of 2018 he bought his own boat. That summer he was a guide on Lake of the Woods. I remember thinking my little brother wasn’t so little anymore. I also remember thinking that now I wouldn’t be able to fish with him as much as I wanted, so selfishly it was a bittersweet moment for me. Being a guide came natural to him having fished with my dad his whole life and just the people person that he was. Pretty typical for a boy in northern Minnesota to play hockey, hunt and fish but he wasn’t a typical 19-year old in my eyes. One of the coolest parts about my little brother to me is that he really took care of my sister and I. He doubled as our big brother, shoveling our cars out of the snow before school, taking us fishing, letting boys know when to get lost and just being a rock for us in some of our hardest times…the list goes on.
He treated everyone around him with respect. I was able to watch my little brother as he turned into a handsome adult with so many people that caring about him because of the way he treated others.
Max was my brother, but he was way more than that to me. He was one of my best buddies (or bubby as we called each other). I always thought of my brother as a simple guy but I see now that things weren’t so simple for him.
I see now that what things look like on the outside can be a lot different then what’s going on inside. I can understand this on a personal level now. Going about my days trying to make the most of them even though I hurt everyday missing him. After talking with my family and Max’s friends it was clear that nobody knew how bad he was hurting, he shocked us all. We all wish that there was something we could have done or helped him with.
Our goal with the Max Foundation is to help, to let people know that it’s okay to talk about your mental health just like it is okay to talk about your physical health.
On August 15th 2011, Rick Rypien, a much loved and valued member of our family lost his battle to depression. One of Rick’s desires was to find a way to reach as many youth as possible and to take away the stigma associated with mental illness. We thought the best way to honor Rick’s life was fulfill that objective so we developed a program we call Project 11.
Designed as an engaging cross-curricular prevention program, Project 11 delivers weekly lessons and daily activities that helps students and teachers develop a greater understanding and awareness of mental health issues within their own lives as well as their peers and teaches them positive coping skills.
Max and Rick shared many of the same endearing qualities. They were both quiet, humble leaders, loved by their teammates, family and friends. We are very proud that Project 11 and Rick’s legacy can be shared in honor of Max’s incredible life and the impact he had on so many.
I hope you will join us in supporting the Max Marvin Foundation so that we can expand this much need work throughout Northern Minnesota and beyond.
Mark J. Chipman
Executive Chairman & Governor
Winnipeg Jets Hockey Club
I stand in support of the Max Foundation’s efforts of raising awareness and bringing attention to mental health. Max was always there to greet you with a beautiful smile and lend a helping hand. The Max Foundation will do the same, providing help to those in need, and just
I first met Max while scouting high school players in Warroad. I would later get to know him a little better when my son William attended a hockey camp in Warroad. Max was a real good friend to William during that week even though he had never met him; referred to him as his “little buddy.”
A couple of things about Max stood out for me. First is that he was everyone’s friend. He reminded me of my brother Tim; another guy who is a friend to all, old or young.
My youth was a lot like Max’s. When I was his age, I shot ducks in the morning before school, played hockey after school and fished with my dad, winter, spring and summer.
The loss of Max came as a shock to me. It serves as a stark reminder for all of us that people can really mask the internal struggles that they may be having.
We need to continue to learn to “listen for what we don’t hear,” particularly when it comes to the young people in our communities.
I have attached a picture of Max and William from that summer. This is the Max that I will remember.
Max is remembered in many ways by many people. There are countless memories of Max. Whether it be his love for his family, his personality, his ability to connect with anyone, his hockey playing, or his hunting and fishing exploits, it is quite clear that Max wasn’t your average teenager. He was exceptional in a variety of ways.
The stories are endless. What you’ve read or heard about Max is only scratching the surface. He was the kid who was so excited to go fishing with his sisters that he’d be texting at all hours about his plans. He was the kid who always greeted you with the most honest and sincere smile you’ve ever seen. He was the kid who once called at 8:00 AM on a snow day to see if he could take a 3 year old to the rink.
When I think of Max I cannot help but think about how much Max cared for those around him before himself. He genuinely cared about everyone that he came in contact with. Because it was Max, this care inevitably made everyone around him a better person. The impact this young man had on our lives and our world was far beyond his years.
Now it’s our turn to have an impact in a way that Max would be proud of. The Max Foundation is focused on supporting mental wellness education and communication to the youth of our area. We owe it to Max to support The Max Foundation as it works to make a difference for our youth. Doing something that will help others is the perfect way to honor Max – it is how he lived his life.
We never know when, it can be uncertain and sudden,
The hunting and fishing and four wheel muddin’,
They come to an end with no reasons to know.
For family and friends, it’s a devastating blow.
Whatever the reason, whatever you planned,
We love you and miss you and with you we stand.
Your spirit lives on in all our hearts,
We’ll sing your praises even if it smarts.
We know you are home with Jesus your King,
In him we believe, the pain will not sting.
So go home today and love one another,
In him we pray for peace, little brother.
I am very happy the Marvin family decided to start the Max Foundation. Bringing Project 11 to the school is great and will help so many young kids with their emotions and feelings. I personally enjoy the reminders and motivational quotes and sayings that are on Instagram. Honestly, they are day brighteners for many.
I feel fortunate to have known Max most of my life. We grew up together watching our older sisters play many, many hockey games. From playing together at all these hockey tournaments, riding for hours on the Subway bus, family vacations, time at the cabin, to going to prom with Max his senior year, the memories with him will last forever.
Max was always such a happy guy- friendly, and willing to take the time to ask how you were. No matter who you were, he was always there to have a conversation with you and he genuinely cared about you. It was and still is very evident that he was a special guy to many.
I am still very sad. I think about Max often and wonder why and wish there was something someone could have done. While time has been tough since December, I remind myself that we need to appreciate every moment and every day. Each day with loved ones is a blessing.
Thanks for the memories Max!
When my wife Mallory and I met Max, we knew he was a very special kid. Mature beyond his years, an infectious smile and an attitude that was over the top. Max was the kind of kid that you would want your kids to hang with and no doubt learn from. We remember thinking, after spending several days with Max at the Marvin’s cabin, that there are only a few kids we’ve ever met with this kind of attitude and grace, we were very impressed to say the least. His passion for the outdoors and his knowledge at such a young age was amazing!
Hearing of Max’s passing was a big blow to us, many thoughts ran through our minds and we just couldn’t believe that something like this could happen to someone who seemed to be so full of life and happy on the outside. The point is, mental illness is many times only felt by the person it’s affecting, often undiagnosed and undetected until it’s too late. I believe it would be Max’s wish to know he could help others in his situation and people need to know it’s ok to tell someone when you are hurting on the inside. Getting help and finding answers to mental issues starts with education and the Max Foundation plans to do just that!!
We love you Max!!!
Nick and Mallory Mundt
Mental wellness has become something so common in young people these days. Anyone who met Max lost a friend. He was friends with young kids all the way up to grandparents. Max has been a friend of mine since our families met. One of my best memories with him is shooting the 10 point deer. We were sitting in the stand looking through the binoculars at a doe. Then about 30 seconds later we were looking at a big buck. He easily could have said I’m gonna take this one. But instead, he said, “take him”. Max seemed as happy as I did about shooting the deer. He cleaned it for me and drove it all around town to show it off with me. That’s the kind of guy Max was. I will cherish the memories I have had with him forever. The Max Foundation is going to do great things for the town of Warroad by making sure each person knows their importance.
Max- gone way too soon.
I have known Max since he was 3 years old. The Marvin family and my family spent countless hours together watching Lisa, Layla, Hannah and Katie play hockey. While we were away playing hockey, Max and Marlie would spend many hours playing together at the arcade at Schwans Super Rink and swimming in the hotel pool. They were superfans (but really just wanted to keep playing together and not watch the games). A lot of our time together was spent in rinks, but we were also fortunate enough to go on special family vacations where we made wonderful memories. My favorite was spending many days together at Oak Island fishing, hunting, and just hanging out.
As I watched Max grow up, it was very evident to me that he was filled with curiosity, always asking questions and wanting to be better. Fishing was the perfect outlet for him. We spent hours talking about fishing and strategies to get better and better. Fishing was where we could really bond because we both enjoyed it so much. I miss the phone calls and conversations about what new thing we are going to try and where the hot spots are. Max was so knowledgeable and could out fish the best fisherman. I have great memories of Max and Grandpa Jack on many hunting and fishing trips on Oak Island.
Max was a jokester from an early age. He could make anyone laugh and smile. I’ll never forget our two families playing “Things” at the cabin and his one and only answer to every question – “ball fro.” We would laugh and laugh. It never got old no matter how many times he said it.
It was very impressive how Max cared deeply about relationships he built with persons of all ages. He was never too busy to visit and to share stories about his adventures and plans that were on the horizon. He spent time with my 80 year old father eating cake and visiting about hunting and fishing. I don’t think Max even realized how much this meant to him, and everyone he was able to build those deep relationships with.
The Max Foundation is exciting. It is a great way to honor this great kid. The kids in Warroad are lucky to be gaining knowledge about something that affects so many.
It’s hard to put into words the amount of character that Max had. He was the type of kid that could brighten up a room just by walking in. It never mattered what age you were, Max would be able to make you smile, and he had the ability to talk to anyone. Max cared for everyone, especially his teammates. His ability to talk to people made it easy for his teammates to look up to him as a leader on and off the ice. This goes to show just how important the Max Foundation is for spreading awareness about mental health. It is time to end the stigma of mental health, and show people that there are resources available to people who suffer from a disease that most of the time cannot be seen. Max was an incredible man, and through the Max Foundation his spirit will live forever.
ASK FOR HELP
Three simple words, yet so hard to do! I wish every day that Max would’ve asked me or anyone for help.
When I think of Max Marvin, my thoughts immediately go to a long, bow-legged, smiley young man with his hockey flow curling around his cap as he shouts out a heartfelt greeting of, “Hey Buffy!” On the outside, he looked like a young man with the world waiting for him to do great things. Little did we know that on the inside, he was struggling to navigate that very same world.
Something Max didn’t have trouble navigating was the Northwest Angle. His love of spending time with family and friends at their cabin and being in his boat guiding people to the fish was his passion. People would enter his boat as strangers, but leave as friends. He had such a way of making everyone from young to old feel welcome.
Max and I had gotten close over the last years through hunting and fishing together. Max has now taught me that mental health issues can affect anyone from any walk of life. Mental Health doesn’t discriminate! The Max Foundation will make a difference by providing essential resources and teach courage and bravery for all who are struggling with mental health to reach out. It is time for all of us to BE BRAVE and ASK FOR HELP!
Hello everyone, my name is Paul Hanowski. I am honored to be able to
share with you a few stories about Max and the relationship we had.
I know it is cliché to say this but Max was like a second son to my
wife, Dana, and I. His sisters Lisa and Layla are considered extensions
of our family and I believe our three children think of them as
I don’t think this relationship is unique to my family, however. Not only do the Marvin kids have their biological grandparents, Cal, Beth, Jack and Virgina, I know they also have Grandpa Frank, Grandpa Loren and Grandma Helen. That’s just the ones I know of.
I first met Max when he was around 6 years old. The one word I would use to describe my first impression of Max would be inquisitive. It is defined as:
- Given to examination or investigation
- Inclined to ask questions
After about three hours of my first day fishing with Max and Izzy,
Izzy said Max, “Quit asking Paul so many questions, remember our rule,
you get two questions, choose them carefully.” That slowed Max down
that day but, over the years, it continued. I tried to be honest with Max
and many times, early in our relationship, I would simply respond “Max,
I don’t know.” Later, with cellphones and the internet I got to say
“Max, just Google it.” He taught me there’s a lot that I don’t know.
In the last couple years, Max found a higher source of education. He
would still ask me questions, but he had already done some research.
He’d ask, “Paul, what do you think of this, I talked to Nick Marvin and
he thinks we should do it this way” or “Paul, I talked to Nick and he
thinks we should be using this product.” Max went from junior high to
college after finding his new source of education.
I believe Max learned a great deal simply by asking questions or
listening to other people’s conversations. Sometimes this posed a
problem for Max at school, though. On a 6th grade social studies test,
Max used his outside sources of information to score some extra credit
points. That didn’t work out quite so well for Max. For the full story
I’ll defer to his family or maybe Dean Bethune.
As he matured, another word would be needed to describe Max. That
word would be respectful. On one particular fishing trip, I had guys
from Arkansas, West Virginia, Missouri, and Kentucky. These are places
where “yes sirs” and “no sirs” are a given. These individuals were
around Max a total of six days over two years. Every one of them were
overwhelmingly impressed with Max.
All of these guys, along with many other people I have introduced to
Max have reached out over the past few days asking me to express their
condolences to Izzy and the girls.
I know Izzy is finding it difficult to respond to messages left for
him. I hope someday that he’ll read them and appreciate the amount of
support he and his family have.
Max also had a gift of being able to relate to people of all ages.
Whether you were two or 92, you were in Max’s wheelhouse. I’ve seen him
with Lee Marvin’s son Charlie at about two, Casey Hendrickson at age
six. They gravitated towards Max like he was their big brother.
In the last few days I’ve heard numerous stories from other people
who had the same observation. Rube Byorkman said how Max would bring
him fish. Spencer Johnston, how many 18-year-olds could sit with you
and your wife for two hours trying to wiggle one last boat cover out of
you? Max could. This summer, I helped Max launch his boat the first
day of his professional guiding career. He was nervous. I told him
“Max, don’t be anybody but yourself and you’ll be fine.” From the
stories I’ve heard, he did just that and it worked out well.
In September, I had some friends coming to fish. I talked to Max and asked
- Max, how are the fish biting?
- What color is working best?
- How do I work this new bungee anchor?
- Why don’t you put your fish in your livewell?
Then I stopped, looked around for Izzy and for him to say “Paul, stop
asking Max so many questions. Remember the rule. You only get two
questions, choose them carefully.”
In closing, I would like to say that we may never understand this situation we find ourselves in today. Max made a decision that none of us here agree with. Hopefully we find it in our hearts to forgive this one decision and remember the great kid he was to each and every one of us.
Max will always be part of our family. My family met Max and the Marvin family through our youngest child and youth hockey. At that time none of of us knew how this infectious blond-haired, skinny kid would impact our family. Over the next 10 years of Max’s life, he became a part of our family. Max spent two summers living with us, becoming our son, Mason’s, best friend (or what they thought – stepbrothers! ) to this day we don’t know who was Brennan or who was Dale! Not only did Mason gain his best friend, but our other children gained a brother! And Tanya and I another child.
My family has always been really close with the Marvin family. From the day we moved up there our families clicked, we became good friends and always hung out together. I saw Max, who was also in my class, every day and got to know him pretty well over the past six years. Max is like no other kid his age. There wasn’t a friendlier smile to be greeted with. No matter the age, Max was always there to make someone, if not everyone, smile. He was a class clown but also the kind of guy who’d help you out in any situation. Max was someone that always saw the light in every day. When I was struggling in high school he was always there to talk to about it. And, even in college, he would be the first to ask “How are you?”, and he would seriously mean it. I miss Max every day and constantly think of something that could’ve been said or done to change the past. Anyone who knew Max misses him deeply, and that is why the Max Foundation and bringing awareness of mental health to Warroad is so important. The Max Foundation is something so special, it will be a project that hits so close and makes such a positive influence for the kids in Warroad. Mental health affects a lot of people, and making sure it is talked about and awareness is brought to it will benefit the town and the people of Warroad tremendously.
Mental health is uncomfortable to talk about for so many. It is for us, too. Every minute of every day, someone needs help. We never know how much help someone needs or why, however, we can all agree, that we need to make it okay to talk about mental health as a family, to co-workers, to your friends, and your neighbors, to name a few. With the help of the Max Foundation, we are all moving the needle in the right direction and helping remove the stigma that is associated with mental health.
Max was a great son, brother, cousin, friend, teammate and all-around great
young man. Max left us way too soon and with the help of the Max
Foundation, we can all honor Max by helping to create a legacy that he
would be very proud of by getting help to those who need it.
Tracy, Sandy, Katie & Ryan Pogue