Participants Sought for Benefit Run for Library Attack Survivor


Bloomingdale-Riverview Patch

Student volunteers from East Bay High School’s Student Government Association are making last-minute preparations to host the first 5K4Q Run at 8 a.m. Saturday, May 19 at E.G. Simmons Park, 2401 19th Ave. N.W., Ruskin. The purpose of the event is to raise funds for the continued care of the Bloomingdale library attack survivor.

It has been nearly four years since the East Bay alumnus and former student government member was brutally attacked outside of the Bloomingdale Regional Library. The Bloomingdale library survivor, as she has come to be known, continues to make improvements in her recovery, but the road to a complete return to health is a long and costly one for this young woman, now 22.
The members of the student-run organization are too young to have attended class with the student, but through this volunteer effort, have come to know the survivor and her family, and are inspired by her determination. 

The 5K race will begin after opening ceremonies at 8 a.m., followed by a 1-mile fun run at 9:15. Medals will be awarded following the race, and a special presentation will be made to the survivor and her family by students.

For information, contact event organizers Kendall MacDonald or Kaley Bishop at or 813-364-GO5K (4655).

In April 2008, the young woman was brutally raped, beaten and left to die outside of the Bloomingdale Regional Library in Valrico. Equipped with an incredible will to survive, she has spent the last four years working hard to recover from the brutal attack.
She was about to graduate from high school and continue her education on a full scholarship to the University of Florida when the attack occurred. Today, the young woman cannot walk, talk, see or eat on her own, but she is making improvements. She communicates through widening her eyes, smiling and clenching her fists. She requires around-the-clock care and attends daily physical, occupational and experimental therapies to aid her recovery.

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