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Community raises money for new driveway for Franklin family months after son killed in crash

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FRANKLIN -- A fundraising campaign was launched in Franklin to raise money for a new driveway for a family in the community after storms flooded their yard -- far from the biggest challenge they've faced this summer.

Getting a 7- and 10-year-old to the bus stop on time each morning is difficult enough, especially if the weather isn't ideal, and the route isn't handicap-friendly.

"Because Kavi's in a wheelchair, and we can't get the wheelchair through the water," said Kate Gray.

Kate Gray

Kate Gray

Kate GrayFOX6 News caught up with Gray and her kids on Friday, Sept. 13, an unexpected pool day after their driveway flooded. It meant a temporary adjustment to everyone's schedules, but the long-term impact could be devastating for this family that's already fragile.

"The routine is really important right now," said Gray. "The kids are struggling enough trying to get back into the routine, because of the traumatic summer that they've had."

On June 26, Gray's eldest son, Anthony Hales, was killed in a crash. The Franklin football star would have turned 18 on the first day of school.

Kate Gray and Christy Cool

Kate Gray and Christy Cool

"I don't think it's a depression, but I'm a mother grieving the loss of my child, so I don't know what you call that," said Gray. "There's not a word for it."

That's why fellow Franklin parent Christy Cool could not stay silent when she drove by the Gray's home on the day the flooding happened. With Gray's blessing, over the next week, Cool reached out to contractors and set up a account to help transform the gravel driveway into concrete, complete with a drainage system at the bottom.

Anthony Hales and Kate Gray

Anthony Hales and Kate Gray

"As a mom, if you can get any help, or support, or love, or feeling like anyone is in your back corner, that makes all the difference in the world," said Cool.

With her world turned upside down, this continued support was slowly helping Gray put her life back together.

Kate Gray

"These people are amazing," said Gray. "My son was amazing, and he attracted good-hearted people, and I think all of that love has just surrounded our house and family right now."

They set a goal of getting the driveway done before winter.

CLICK HERE to access the account.

T-shirts honoring Anthony Hales

CLICK HERE to purchase T-shirts honoring Anthony Hale

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