Dairy Queen raises $9,000 for Tripp Halstead


WINDER, Ga. - A Winder business raised thousands of dollars for a 2-year-old boy critically injured after a tree limb hit him on the head.

The Dairy Queen on May Street donated 20 percent of sales to Tripp Halstead on Thursday, and also collected donations for the toddler.

The business had lines out the door and cars backed up out of the parking lot for hours.

Owner Brenda Walters told Channel 2's Amy Napier Viteri they held a similar fundraiser once before for a local teen who suffered a head trauma. That teen, Kristen Clack, has since recovered and attended the fundraiser Wednesday night.

Clack told Viteri she was 17 at the time of the car accident that put her in a coma for 12 days.

"My first night there they came to my parents and said that I wasn't going to make it. They said, if I do, it's a miracle," Clack told Viteri.

She came out of the coma but faced a long recovery.

"I had to learn how to write, how to talk. I had to learn how to walk, I had to learn how to do math, I had to learn how to practically do everything all over again," Clack said.

Clack didn't know at the time the Winder Dairy Queen was raising money to help her. The store donated 20 percent of sales from one day at that time to help her recovery, as well.

This time, Clack and her family were able to attend as the store did it again for Tripp Halstead.

"It's very emotional, very emotional. I can just about hold back. Since we weren't here, we were there watching her," mother Misty Clack said. "It's very moving to know this community pulls together like it does, especially for little Tripp."

Earlier Thursday, doctors removed Tripp's breathing tube for the first time since winds from Hurricane Sandy broke a tree limb that fell on his head outside his Winder day care last week.

The Clacks said they're praying for Tripp, and even visited the family over the weekend.

Kristen Clack, like Tripp, is her parents' only child.

"For me to come here it's kind of like a miracle doing something for a miracle", she said.

The store owner estimates they raised at least $9,000 for the Halstead family. Another fundraiser is planned for the family on November 17th at the Winder Lion's Club and the Zaxby's in Winder is donating 10 percent of its sales next Tuesday to the Halstead family.

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