SIDNEY — The Fairlawn Local School District community is coming together to provide relief to one of their own who faces an uncertain future.
A benefit planned for today, Aug. 3, is to help the family of Andy Francis, a 2005 Fairlawn graduate.
On July 21, Francis suffered a neck injury in a boating accident on Pleasant Hill Lake. He remains hospitalized at the Grant Medical Center in Columbus, paralyzed from the neck down, according to published reports.
The 31-year-old Francis works for Columbia Gas of Ohio. His wife, Jena, 29, is a full-time homemaker and caregiver for their two children, son Cooper, 5, and daughter Josie, 2. The family resides in Bellville, southeast of Mansfield.
Jena told the Sidney Daily News that Andy is listed in stable condition. She and Andy have been married for eight years, she added.
Family and friends have planned the Stand with Andy benefit to be at Fairlawn High School from 5 to 9 p.m.
The benefit includes a spaghetti dinner with a salad, roll and drink for a $5 donation, according to Ashley Miller, one of several organizers.
Miller is joined in the planning effort by Audrey and Amanda Francis and other family members as the primary organizational team. All three are Andy’s sisters, and their efforts are to help the family with medical needs and bills.
The team has also scheduled a corn hole tournament that begins at 5:30 p.m. Registration begins at 5 p.m. with a $10 fee per team. A raffle of tickets to Cincinnati Reds and Dayton Dragons games, a lottery ticket basket, gift cards, guns, and other items is planned.
Those unable to attend the event can support the family through a GoFundMe page titled “Rally around the Francis family.”
Miller said area groups have donated food and other items to help with the event.
The writer is a regular contributor to the Sidney Daily News.