The Greek community and student body at Temple University are coming together tomorrow evening to support a classmate who suffered a paralyzing injury last month.
Brian Grubb, a communications major and brother in the Delta Sigma Phi fraternity was climbing into his loft bed when he slipped off and fell headfirst onto the ground, fracturing two vertebrae in his neck. Doctors say he’ll be confined to a wheelchair for the rest of his life.
Spinal cord injuries such as Grubb’s involve lifelong medical treatment and extensive physical rehabilitation, which can cost hundreds of thousands of dollars in the first year alone. As time passes, the costs can climb into the millions.
It was with this daunting reality in mind that the University’s Greek community and Office of Community Service organized an event for tomorrow night to raise money to help offset these costs. Beginning at 5 p.m. Tuesday, there will be a benefit on Temple’s athletic field, featuring food, music and a silent auction. Proceeds will go to the University, who will in turn write a check to Grubb’s family to assist with his medical expenses as he prepares to enter into several weeks of physical rehabilitation.
“It’s going to be kind of a party atmosphere. People can come and hang out, and have fun,” said Lucas Chrenik, outgoing vice president of Delta Sigma Phi and a friend of Grubb.
Among the items being auctioned off will be airline tickets, autographed sports memorabilia, restaurant gift cards and tickets to an upcoming Phillies game.
“I would say that students reacted with shock and sadness but are pulling together to help Brian in a positive way,” said Jeannie Sabaroff, president of the Temple University Greek Association.
According to Chrenik, Brian Grubb’s academic career has been something of a success story thus far. He enrolled at Temple after graduating from high school, but had to drop out after having some academic difficulties. He took a year off, enrolled at a community college and then transferred back to Temple where Chrenik said his academic performance has been “stellar.” Grubb plans on graduating next year.
“Brian has always been an extremely nice guy who always has a smile on his face,” said Sabaroff. “The fact that he might be paralyzed for the rest of his life is such a tragedy.”
Tickets for the benefit, which will take place on Tuesday, May 3 from 5-8 p.m. at the athletic field, cost $20.
“I really hope to see a huge turnout on Tuesday from the Temple community,” she said. “I know that would mean the world to him.”
John P. Titlow can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.