BENEFITING: Shepherd Center
EVENT DATE: Sep 28, 2013
In June of 2006, two southern girls found themselves together in a bar on Bleecker Street in New York City. There was some mild hostility at first, but they eventually came to bond over their mutual number one love: music. They attended countless shows together and endlessly listened to the best albums.
Amy and Jen have been inseparable since, not even allowing thousands of miles of relocation to put a dent in their friendship. They speak nearly every day, and the days they don’t speak are filled with texts and Facebook messages. They’ve seen each other through the best and worst of everything.
On November 18, 2004, Amy suffered tremendous loss when her beloved cousin, Lauren Marie Parker, was involved in a tragic car accident in Mechanicsville, Virginia. She passed away the following day of massive head trauma at the age of 16.
One June 14, 2012, nearly six years to the day after they met, Jen and Amy’s mutual bond went from a love of music to something far darker. Two of Jen’s beloved teenage cousins were traveling through Grainger County, Tennessee when they, too, were involved in a devastating car accident. Jared Michael Parker, 17, and his sister, Jordyn Hope, 16, both sustained massive head trauma and internal injuries in the crash.
Nearly a year later, Jordyn continues to slowly recover from her injuries. Jared’s body bravely fought a hard battle for six long months, but he passed away on December 20, 2012 at the age of 18.
Jen and Amy continue to be devastated over the loss of their dear cousins. They lean on each other daily for mutual support.
While they know nothing can bring Jared and Lauren back or ever replace them, they also know that there can be a much greater good to such sadness. Lauren’s funeral saw 252 people respond to an altar call and Jared and Jordyn’s accident brought an entire community together to host a benefit concert and raise nearly $9,000.00 for their medical care.
Inspired by the hope and goodness of people, Jen and Amy are running together in the Nashville Women’s 5K on September 28, 2013. They will be raising money together to aid a cause that is very near and dear to both their hearts.
All funds raised will go to the Shepherd Center in Atlanta, Georgia to aid in brain and spinal injury research and education. Perhaps in a few years, injuries like those sustained by Lauren, Jared, and Jordyn can be better understood and treatments with more promise for full recovery can be realized. Perhaps these injuries will be no match for the adancement in therapies we have yet to see.
This is a vital mission for which they are running, but they absolutely cannot do it without your help.