Hollister & Abercrombie Fundraisers
Greetings and Happy Holidays!
My name is Michael H. I am an assistant manager at Hollister 512 Smith Haven NY in Long Island.
Our company has setup a donation box in all company stores for this holiday season to raise awareness and funds for the tragic incidence brought to an Abercrombie associate not long ago. I am contacting you because myself and another associate are planning a christmas fundraiser. We would first like to get permission to hold the event. I do not want to go against anyones wishes.
Our goal is to hold an event at a restaurant/bar that I also work at and include catered food, raffles and events and also charge an entrance fee. All profits will go to this charity and straight to the family in question. We have planned for 200 guests, which include managers from the entire north east region. Any information/suggestions would be greatly appreciated. We are working hard to ensure this girl and her family's holiday season is one to be hopeful for.
First of all, thank you so much from Queena and our family. We greatly appreciate that Abercrombie has chosen us to be there holiday charity. It is great to know that there are good people out there with big hearts. I wrote this story up for you. I'm not sure how you would like to use it, but I hope it helps. Just a reminder that her name is not allowed to be mentioned because of the nature of the crime. If you would like pictures, let me know. We can use pictures from the neck down because her face is not allowed to be shown either.
"On the night of April 24th, she was on her way from work to the library to drop off some books that she had borrowed earlier to write a research paper. She had just turned 18 two days before and was planning to celebrate her birthday at the beach that coming weekend with her girlfriends. Her senior prom was the weekend after, and graduation was also quickly approaching.
The library was closed, so she had to return the books into the night-drop bin located near the front door of the library. She was chatting on the cell phone with her best friend, when she pulled into the library. She mentioned over the phone that there was a "weird guy" sitting on a bench nearby and asked her friend to stay on the phone with her as she got out of the car to drop the books into the bin.
Her friend then suddenly heard a scream, and the line went dead. Within minutes, police, sheriffs, EMTS, family, and friends were at the scene. Her car was still parked by the library door, engine still running, doors wide open. There were a couple books scattered on the ground. There was blood by the book drop. She was no where to be found.
Finally, her dad took a flashlight from his van and searched the woods behind the library. There he found her lying on the ground. She had been badly beaten and raped.
She was immediately flown to Tampa General Hospital and admitted into the emergency room, then to the ICU. She had suffered seizures and strokes due to being strangled by her attacker, who was found and arrested that following morning.
The traumatic event had left her blind, unable to speak or swallow, and unable to move. She spent three months at the hospital and was then moved to a rehabilitation hospital in Sarasota. She spent four months there before medicaid decided that she was not making sufficient progress and told the family that they had two weeks either to take her home or admit her into a nursing home.
The family refused the idea of leaving her in a nursing home. They would bring her home, but the house needed major rennovations. The carpet had to be replaced with tile. The master bedroom redesigned so that a wheelchair could be easily manuvered in the small space. The bathroom had to be handicap accesible. The house had to be rewired so that it could support and electric bed, hoyer lift, and feeding pump. Medicaid covered none of the costs of the home rennovations.
The community came together and donated time, money, and resources to help remodel the house for the family in a matter of days. The girl and her mom, who had not slept at home in seven months, finally got to go home.
She has been slowly progressing everyday. She is very alert, smiling, crying, laughing like a normal kid. She can answer questions by using facial expressions and slight arm movements. Her eyesight has come back about 10%. Medicaid does not cover home nursing. They also provide very limited physical, speech, and occupational therapy.
The community has been remarkably helpful to the family. The community put together a series of fundraisers including car washes, fashion shows, and cook-outs. A trust fund was established to help pay for her medical needs. Everyone was touched and inspired by the story of the promising little girl who lost everything, but yet still stayed strong and refused to give up. She was involved at her highschool with many clubs and volenteer organizations. She was on the student body government. She mentored handicapped children. She was very bright and had a full-ride scholarship to the University of Florida and was going to study international business.
The family has a long road ahead of them. The mom cannot work because she is now her daughter's full-time nurse. They need help with medical bills that medicaid won't pay. They would like to hire therapists to help her one day walk and talk again. There is no telling what tomorrow might bring, and everyone is praying for a miracle. In the meantime, the girl lies in her bed, confident that one day she will make it to college and pursue her dreams. The family and the community have come together to support each other through these difficult times, knowing that there is always light at the end of the tunnel."
I can provide you some more information if you need. Feel free to contact me anytime with questions or comments. Thanks again so much for this wonderful help and support. I know Queena loved her work very much, and she is so happy that Abercrombie is helping her through these hard times.
Lastly, if you need more references, go to www.tampabay.com or www.abcactionnews.com and type in the keywords "library attack victim." There you will found many, many articles written about her and her situation.
Looking forward to hearing from you soon,
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