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Fundraisers set to help severely abused infant in recovery
Erik Green remembers hitting his knees in prayer with a stranger in the neonatal unit at Mary Bridge Hospital in Tacoma.
The pair prayed for all the babies on the hospital floor, including his grandson, Darrell Grossman, who had been severely abused by his daughter's boyfriend. The boyfriend has since been arrested.
The hospital was the start of the kindness Green and his family witnessed after his grandson was admitted at 8-weeks-old for severe/massive brain trauma. The baby was released last week and has been under 24 hour care with his family.
"It literally brings tears to my eyes," said Green, his eyes watering. "This community is so small and so big." Within days of hearing the news, residents kicked into action to help the family out with the cost of bills.
Already, two fundraisers are set on the calendar: one on Jan. 30 at The Garage Bar & Grill, and the other at Manette Saloon & Sidebar on Feb. 1. Kat Moor set up the fundraiser for the end of the month in conjunction with the owner of the bar.
She's never met Darrell or his mother.
"It's just how we work," she said. "When stuff like this happens, it’s amazing to see how the community comes together. The community overall has the heart.”
The event is a "Wing Ding for Baby Darrell" set for 6 p.m. A 50/50 raffle and gift baskets will be raffled off, and all proceeds will be donated to the family.
Moor is also accepting gift basket items, gas cards for the family and monetary items to be deposited in Grossman's fund at her Kritter's Leather Creations Shop. The infant is also in need of baby wipes and size one and two diapers. Any leftover donations will be given for the Manette Saloon & Sidebar event, Moor said.
The Feb. 1 benefit will be from 3 p.m. to 8 p.m. with live music, a silent auction and drink specials.
Proceeds will go to helping the family with bills.
One of the biggest costs at the moment is gas, Green said.
"His doctor appointments are all along the I-5 corridor," he said, including in Bellingham and Tacoma.
Although the infant has been released, he still has swelling on the brain. A bone and brain scan will be more conclusive, and the family will know more next month, Green said. Even though the monetary help has been useful, Green said that he appreciates anyone who shares the news of the fundraisers. Donating time, energy or items for the raffles are all appreciated, he said.
"Share it on Facebook," he said. "If you can't think of donations or give money, share it. Somebody can help in some way." Pages Books is also serving as a monetary drop-off point for the family.
As for emotional support, the baby's family has received it in every way they can imagine, Green said.
The family's gotten calls as far away as Nova Scotia and Italy from people offering up kind words and prayers.
"(It's) amazing," he said. "My wife's chatted with people all over the world just offering thoughts and prayers."
It's the kind words that get Green. He's even got a folder full of the nice things people have said to him over the last few weeks.
"To know that complete strangers care," Green said before trailing off. "You hear about abuse cases. People always saying it's not here. (This) it hits home."
Additionally, Kitsap Credit Union, Smith Chiropractic & Sports Rehab, American Sass, Exquisite Gift Baskets, Bremerton Chamber of Commerce, Harrison Medical and Mary Bridge Children's hospital also have helped the family.
Help baby Darrell:
Donations can be made at any Kitsap Credit Union to Darrell Grossman.
Account number: 352758
Mobil number: 3602655042
Donations for the fundraising event may be mailed to 6323 Kitsap Way Bremerton, Wa. 98312.