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Motorcycle, 4-wheeler accidents leave two families in need of help

Sue Guinn Legg • Jul 31, 2014 at 6:06 PM

August is shaping up to be a busy month for fundraising with friends of a couple of local families in crisis planning large benefits to help with expenses stemming from near-fatal accidents.On Aug. 17, friends of Pam Ferguson, a Johnson City woman who has been in a coma and on life support since a June 28 motorcycle crash that occurred on North Roan Street while she was taking part in a benefit ride for veterans, will host a silent auction, raffle and specialty product sale at Double Tree Inn.Kristi Lyons, a lifelong friend of Ferguson’s daughters, has organized the event and has gathered a large and generous collection of gifts to be auctioned and raffled away, including two nights at Hilton Gardens in Gatlinburg and day passes, tickets and gift certificates from contributors, including Hands On! Regional Museum, House of Ink, Schumacher Family Chiropractic, Real to Reel Theater, Back Door Records, Spa Glow in Gray, Mountain Yoga, Scratch Pizza, the Kingsport Ballet, Pitter Patter Portraits, Heather Rorvick Photography and others.Vendors will include Origami Owl (floating charm lockets), Tupperware, Avon, Pure Romance, 31 Purses, Damsel in Defense (personal protection items), Pampered Chef, Paparazzi Jewelry, Perfectly Posh (home spa items), Jamberry Nails, Plexus (weight loss products), Cakes in a Cup and others.The benefit will be held from 1 to 5 p.m. in the Double Tree Inn banquet room. Admission is free. Raffle tickets are $5. Donations will be accepted to help with Ferguson’s household expenses and medical bills not covered by her insurance.“We would very much appreciate anyone who would like to help this family,” Lyons said. “Pam is very loved. We are hoping she pulls through this and we are determined to help her every step of the way.”More information about the event and how to help Ferguson may be obtained by emailing Lyons at kristi.fox.lyons@gmail.com.Friends of 16-year-old Weston Dowell, who was seriously injured in a four-wheeler accident in Johnson County on May 28, will host a musical benefit to help with his medical bills and expenses related to his two-week hospital stay. The benefit will be held Aug. 9 at Ralph Stout Park in Mountain City, The benefit will be held from 1-6 p.m. and will include performances by New Covenant, Joel Crisp, Country Crossroads, Melody Maxwell, Danny Eastridge and Ray Allen Jr. Admission is free and donations to help Dowell’s family will be accepted. The benefit will also include a large multi-family yard sale, a bake sale and a raffle of books, Bibles, music CDs and other items donated to help the family. Food will be available for purchase. Family friend Linda Nye said Dowell is now home and recovering slowly from the near-fatal accident in which he suffered a head injury, multiple fractures to his jaw and a broken wrist. “He’s doing pretty good but he still has a long way to go,” she said. More information about the benefit and how to help Dowell’s family may be obtained by calling Nye at 460-1270.First Tennessee Bank’s 150 Days of Giving, a celebration of the bank’s 150th anniversary in which the First Tennessee Foundation is giving $5,000 to a different nonprofit organization every day for 150 days, will continue through Aug. 21 online at www.150daysofgiving.com.Numerous local nonprofit organizations that have received support from First Tennessee through its many years of charitable giving in the communities where it does business were included in the online voting competition, and several are still in the running for the $5,000 cash awards being given away daily. Those who wish to help may search the website for their favorite local charities and cast one vote a from each of their online devices daily through the end of the competition.If there is a need or a project in your neighborhood the Good Neighbor column can assist with, contact Sue Guinn Legg at slegg@johnsoncitypress.com, P.O. Box 1717, Johnson City, TN 37605 1717 or 929-3111, ext. 335. Follow Sue Guinn Legg on Twitter @sueleggjcpress. Like her on Facebook at www.facebook.com/sueleggjcpress.

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