A fundraiser for Dennis Ahoe, a Williston, N.D., resident who was seriously injured in a June 1 motorcycle crash, will fall on the same day as his 60th birthday, according to his family.
He won’t be attending the NDAD-sponsored community event, set for noon to 5 p.m. Sunday, Sept. 23, at the Old Armory building in Williston.
Still, Ahoe’s family and friends hope his birthday fundraiser moves him closer to a critical recovery step: a transfer from a Minot hospital, where he’s been treated since the crash, to an accredited facility elsewhere in the Dakotas that specializes in serious spinal cord injuries.
Ahoe’s U.S. Highway 2 crash, which took place near Minot during a ride from Williston to his hometown of Devils Lake, left him a quadriplegic.
Minot Trinity Hospital has cared for Dennis since his crash. But Ahoe, who worked for Creation Carpets in Williston, lacks health insurance. That has complicated family efforts to move him to an accredited spinal cord rehabilitation program, his family says. A transfer to a Sanford Health spinal cord injury program is tentative, based on yet-to-be-authorized acceptance into the federal Medicaid program, according to his eldest daughter, Cherice Levenhagen.
Dennis has experienced some involuntary movement in his legs, which Trinity medical staff has called encouraging, Levenhagen said. His best hope for any kind of extensive recovery still rests on his ability to receive spinal cord rehabilitation as soon as possible, she said.
Early plans for the Sept. 23 Williston fundraiser call for a free-will offering sloppy joes-with-salads meal and a silent auction. Special bracelets, necklaces and keychains also will be sold to help raise funds.
NDAD is serving as custodian for donations made at the Sept. 23 fundraiser in Williston and for donations sent directly in Dennis’ name to NDAD. By donating through NDAD or an NDAD-sponsored event, 100 percent of the proceeds will help offset Dennis’ mounting medical bills and essential day-to-day expenses, including transportation to a rehabilitation center when the time comes.
More information is available by calling either (701) 775-5577 or 1 (800) 532-NDAD (6323).
Or, go the the NDAD website, http://www.ndad.org/fundraisers.asp, where you also may make a donation via the “Give Online” button that accompanies Dennis Ahoe’s story.