September 16, 2015
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Marie Bartrem, Winn-Dixie No. 728 service area manager, gets picked up by the Lee County Sheriff’s Office and taken to Joe’s Crab Shack to get “locked up” to help raise funds for the Muscular Dystrophy Association.​

A police car pulled up to the front of Winn-Dixie store No. 728 in Fort Myers, Florida, and the officer walked into the store looking for Service Area Manager Marie Bartrem. He was sent there to take her to jail—a mock jail set up at a local Joe’s Crab Shack.

Bartrem signed up to participate in the Muscular Dystrophy Association’s “MDA Lock-Up,” an event that gives community members a fun opportunity to raise funds to send children with neuromuscular disorders to a weeklong summer camp.

Muscular dystrophy is caused by genetic defects that weaken muscles over time and make the tasks of daily living difficult.

“The camp gives the kids an opportunity to do things normal, healthy children get to do,” said Bartrem. “It also gives them an outlet to interact with people who are going through the same challenges they experience day to day.”

Bartrem said she was inspired to get more involved with causes that matter in her community after seeing the impact of Southeastern Grocers’ Wounded Warrior Project Day on July 4.

“I’ve worked at Winn-Dixie for 25 years and have never experienced something of that magnitude,” she said. “It made me want to do more, volunteer more for organizations and events that help people.”

While she was “locked up” and reaching out to people to donate to MDA, Bartrem had the opportunity to meet Myles, a child suffering from muscular dystrophy. His mom, who was a speaker at the event, also happens to be a regular customer at Winn-Dixie store No. 728.

Myles is one of more than 3,500 children MDA sends to summer camps nationwide. Bartrem talked to Myles and his mom and learned more about the summer camp and the activities the children participate in.

“She had me in tears just listening to how positively affected Myles is after attending the camp and how much better he feels about his situation,” said Bartrem. “Next, he’s going to learn archery—you can see the excitement in his face when he talks about going back.”

After serving her “time,” Bartrem was brought back to the store in a limousine and with a full heart. She already signed up to get “locked up” again next year.

“Getting to meet Myles and his mom really brought it home for me,” said Bartrem. “These are people who are customers at my store—I know I will see them again and I got to help enrich their lives. You don’t get more local, more ‘neighborhood’ than that.”

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Marie Bartrem, Winn-Dixie No. 728 service area manager, was "locked up" at MDA’s annual event to raise money for children to attend summer camps.

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Winn-Dixie No. 728 Service Area Manager Marie Bartrem (right) participated in the MDA lock up which raises money for children like Myles (left) to go to camp.

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