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3-year-old boy loses leg in lawnmower accident

By Kyle Benjamin, kbenjamin@wcyb.com
Published On: May 15 2014 09:28:45 AM CDT
Updated On: May 17 2014 03:35:50 PM CDT

Family says Brayden Altmann is doing very well after his accident.

ABINGDON, Va. -

He's a 3-year-old with his own hashtag, #PrayForBray, and an attitude that will inspire.

"In a situation where most people would probably give up, this three-year-old kid is showing a lot of courage. A lot of courage," said Brayden's uncle John Bebber.

Bebber told News 5 his nephew is a bundle of energy, even now. "He's really active. He has the biggest personality of any three-year-old you'll meet. He's just a sweet, caring kid. He's active always wanting to be on the go and wanting to play," said Bebber.

But his family needs help to cover living expenses after Brayden was run over by a lawn mower on Mother's Day, leaving him with a life-changing injury. "It's his right leg just below the knee. It was removed during surgery at the hospital," said Bebber.

Friends and family have already launched a campaign to raise money to support Brayden's recovery and his parents. Kayla Neece went to high school with Brayden's mom Kelsey Moore, and is quarterbacking one fundraiser with the help of the blood bank Blood Assurance. "Right now, his medical bills are covered. Our main concern is his parents' expenses. Electric, rent, anything they would need right now, because they are out of work and having to be with him at the hospital," said Neece.

Brayden is being treated at Niswonger Children's Hospital in Johnson City. Emergency Room physician Dr. Kelly Lewis told News 5 this is the time of year they see yard work-related trauma. "Injuries anywhere from minor lacerations to sever lacerations, even amputations in children," said Lewis.

Dr. Lewis says the best thing to do is keep kids inside while mowing. "It's very easy for a small child's leg or arm, or even an adult's extremities, to get caught underneath. In a split second you could have a complete amputation or even death," Lewis said.

Brayden is lucky, to be sure; he's adjusting to his new life and a long road of recovery. "There's been a huge outpouring of support, and as long as that continues to happen I think that we're going to get everything that we need. Brayden's going to get everything that he needs. It's been amazing, the amount of support that we've gotten," said Bebber.

Brayden will have a skin graft operation Friday so he can eventually be fitted for a prosthetic leg.

Fundraisers will be held for Brayden and his family.

During Trail Days on Friday May 16th and Saturday May 17th a raffle will be held to benefit Brayden. The drawing will take place on Saturday at 8:15 pm. Raffle tickets are $5.00 each and the basket will contain over $100 worth of prizes.

On June 7th, there will be a fundraiser for Brayden at The Coomes Recreational Center in Abingdon, VA starting at 11 am.

If you donate blood at the blood mobile you will receive a free swimming pass for the day, a free t-shirt, along with snacks and drinks. There will be three photographers, a bake sale, face painting and a silent auction.

Starting May 15th through May 31st, Alecia Couch Photography will be offering $20.00 photo shoots with 10 edited photos on a CD with Print Release. Proceeds will go directly to Brayden's family.

You can also donate on their Go Fund Me website here: http://www.gofundme.com/94038c

A Facebook page has been set up for Pray For Bray. Click here to visit it.