Raffle to help GVSU student Chandler McBride lead an independent life

Posted at 12:39 PM, Aug 29, 2014
and last updated 2014-08-29 16:40:04-04

GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. – As students gear up for the school year, Grand Valley State University Student Chandler McBride and family are working around the clock to raise donations for next week’s raffle. Their goal: to help McBride lead an independent life.

McBride, a Three Rivers High School graduate and current GVSU student, was paralyzed in a swimming pool accident in June 2012. Aaron Zeigler, president of Zeigler Auto Group, saw FOX 17’s story about McBride and his family’s unreliable wheelchair accessible minivan with about 230,000 miles. Then Zeigler reached out to the family and offered to donate a new conversion van.

Now in about one month, McBride will receive his custom-fit wheelchair accessible van that will allow him to lead a mobile life, to and from class at GVSU. McBride’s family said they had goose bumps when Zeigler first reached out to them.

But first, Thursday, Sept. 4, family friend Dave McClain is holding their much anticipated raffle to help McBride with other vital tools to lead an easier life: things like a lift that would allow McBride to get in and out bed by himself, and some physical therapy equipment that is not covered by his insurance. McClain said McBride is working alongside his doctors and therapist to purchase the correct equipment.

“Chandler’s, and his family’s, faith in God has gotten them through all of the obstacles that have been put in front of them,” said McClain. “From being told he would never eat on his own, to completely excelling through every challenge he has been face with, is an inspiration to myself and many.”

The raffle is scheduled for Sept. 4 at 7 P.M., the opening day of the NFL season, as McClain works to finalize a Grand Rapids location for the drawing.

The raffle prizes include: footballs signed by Detroit Lions players Calvin Johnson, Matthew Stafford, and Reggie Bush; a hockey puck signed by Detroit Red Wings player Johan Franzen; autographed photos of former Detroit Tigers player Jhonny Peralta, and Chicago Bears players; as well as cash prizes of $50 and $100.

There are three ways to purchase raffle tickets, which cost $10 per ticket or 11 tickets for $100:

1. Donate at McBride’s Crowdrise website.
McClain will email you a picture of your tickets with your name on them and the number of your tickets. McClain can also mail this if preferred.
2. McClain will be out in the community selling tickets at storefronts. Places and dates will be posted to their Facebook page.
3. Mail a check to the following address and McClain will mail you the tickets:
P.O. Box 806
Marcellus, MI 49067

“I cannot help but think that God has placed goodness in so many people’s hearts to help, it is simply amazing,” said McClain.

McClain told FOX 17 that a business in Three Rivers, that wishes to remain anonymous, will match the funds raised through this raffle and give that sum to the McBride family.

The winners of the raffle will be contacted within 24 hours of the drawing on Thursday Sept. 4. The drawing will be recorded and posted to McBride’s Facebook page.