The members of Beta Theta Pi at Washington State University are raising funds to make their house wheelchair accessible to their newly paralyzed brother, John Crawford. The fundraising followed a unanimous vote by the chapter to accommodate Crawford upon completion of his physical therapy and will primarily be in the form of a silent auction over Mom’s Weekend.
Crawford sustained these injuries after a car crash in which three of his fraternity brothers were injured and another, Dashiell Mortell, was tragically killed. John’s twin brother, Justin, was also injured in the crash. This was obviously a devastating blow to all the members of Beta at WSU, as well as to the families of those injured, but the fraternity aimed to make John’s transition back to Washington State as smooth as possible.
Initially, it was unclear whether or not John would return to WSU-Pullman or stay in his hometown and attend WSU-Vancouver, but Crawford eventually FaceTimed his fraternity brothers to let them know that he would return.
“When we heard the news that he wanted to come back to Pullman, it was definitely a heartwarming moment,” remarked Bailey Erickson, Beta Theta Pi’s special events coordinator, in an interview with The Daily Evergreen. He went on to explain how John was hoping to live in the house and how he thrives around his pledge class and his friends. Erickson and Crawford grew up together and have been friends since elementary school.
Crawford finished his physical therapy and is set to return to Pullman next semester, where he will be living in the live-in advisor’s room, equipped with a handicap-accessible bathroom and shower.
So far, several members of the WSU community have contributed items to the auction. Also, a home building company has reached out to help, as well as an alumnus who is a contractor. Additionally, a GoFundMe was started that has now raised over $50,000 to cover the Crawford brothers’ medical expenses. The Mom’s Weekend auction is poised to be a huge success and is expected to raise even more money to assist the Crawford family and help make the Beta house more wheelchair-friendly.
It’s always heartwarming to see a community rally together to support a just cause, especially when that community involves members of Greek life supporting a fraternity brother who needs it. Shoutout to Washington State Beta Theta Pi and shoutout to John Crawford..
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