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Benefit set to help boys hurt in car accident

Cincinnati hospital next step for older brother

ARABIA — The Symmes Valley school district community is pulling together to help one of its own.

On Saturday Myers Fastlane Convenience store at Arabia will host a daylong benefit for the two Symmes Valley students who were seriously injured in a car accident on Sept. 12.

Michael Harvey, 16, of County Road 4, Pedro, and his brother, Matthew Harvey, 10, were hurt on their way to school on Sept. 12. Both boys were transported by helicopter to Cabell Huntington Hospital that morning. Matthew, who suffered leg injuries, has been released to his home.

However, Michael remains in serious condition at the hospital with a head injury.

“Michael has longer road ahead,” Robin Mart, a friend of the Harvey family, said. “We are not sure of the extent of the brain damage. We know he needs some deep speech therapy.”

The boy is ambulatory and slated to be transferred to a Cincinnati hospital for speech therapy.

“He can take himself places,” Mart said. “It is mostly from the head injuries, confusion. He has a hard time putting some of his words together. He is making progress. He is going to be OK. But he is up and wants to go home. He is able to tell them he is tired and he wants to go home.”

When Michael goes to Cincinnati, only one of his parents will be allowed to stay with him. The other parent will remain in Lawrence County caring for the other child.

“The parents are tired, but holding up, pulling together and doing what they have to do,” Mart said.

The benefit starts with a 10 a.m. registration for a motorcycle-car ride. Registration fee is $10 per vehicle, with cars and bikes leaving at 11 a.m. and returning to the store at 2 p.m.

Also starting at 11 a.m. will be carnival games, face painting, music, bake sale, pop can drive, food and refreshments. At 5 p.m. will be a Chinese auction with tickets 3 for $1 or arms length for $5. A hog roast dinner will be by donation.

Organizers are still in need of the following for the event baked goods, hot dogs, baked beans, cakes, tea, coffee and pop, raffle tickets and paper plates and plastic silverware. Items for the auction are also needed.

Early on the morning of Sept. 12 the Ford Ranger driven by Michael, was westbound on State Route 141, just west of Waterloo, went off the right side of the road into a ditch line, striking a culvert, then a tree.

At dusk there will be a candle lighting and prayer for the two boys and their family.

“I am absolutely astonished at the support we have gotten from the community, how they have come together,” Mart said. “The prayers of the community, it has given us hope.”