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Community fights for Gracie Davis

The Red Bay and surrounding communities are still praying, donating and sending positive thoughts for Gracie Davis and her family.

On a trip with friends, driving with her boyfriend in one car and convoying with two other friends traveling in a different car, Red Bay’s 18-year-old Gracie Davis was in a car accident that resulted in serious injury to her brain, brain stem and skull. She also sustained a broken rib.

It was Dec. 17, in Hot Springs, Ark., and a month later, Davis is still fighting.

Although the Red Bay teen has not yet regained consciousness, parents Marie and Mitch Davis report she has shown signs of understanding, including instances of reacting to touch and familiar voices.

Among the many ways the community has come together to help include a Facebook group called Saving Grace, which has 2.4 thousand members. The purpose of the group is to share updates about Gracie and the ways people can help her and her family.

Through a special fund at Community Spirit Bank – ask for the “Gracie fund” – people can donate to the family, and donations can also be made through Red Bay First United Methodist Church.

The City of Red Bay conducted a roadblock fundraiser in downtown Red Bay Jan. 15.

“We had an absolutely wonderful response, and we are so very thankful and appreciative of all who contributed at the roadblock to help Gracie’s family,” said Mayor Charlene Fancher. A number of city employees were involved in the collection effort, which totaled more than $2,300.

According to family, friends, teachers and numerous others in the community, Gracie is almost universally known as exceptionally kind, caring, inclusive, inspiring and motivated. She is active in a variety of school activities, an employee at Big Star, passionate about her church and active in the community, including with the Junior Leaders and the Distinguished Young Women.

“Gracie is a special young lady with a drive and determination to succeed,” said Franklin County Chamber of Commerce Director Cassie Medley. “I have no doubt those qualities will serve her well during the healing process. Gracie is in my thoughts and prayers, along with the thoughts and prayers of fellow Junior Leaders.”

“Gracie is a very sweet young woman, and we were proud to have her as a contestant in the Distinguished Young Women program last year,” said Franklin County Extension Coordinator Katernia Cole-Coffey, who serves as one of the DYW program directors. “The Northwest Alabama Distinguished Young Women board is hoping that each day brings Gracie closer to a speedy recovery. We are thinking many loving and caring thoughts for her as she recovers.”

Friend and classmate Jean-Marie Moore said Gracie’s big personality and bright and cheerful attitude make a positive impact on everyone around her.

“Gracie wants everybody to feel cared about and loved and to get along,” Moore said. “She wants everyone to have a good time, and she works to make things fun, no matter how boring an activity might be.”

Another friend and classmate, Avery Klose, said Gracie’s humor is “infectious” and explained she’s also thoughtful and cares about the details in working to make things fun and special for others.

“Gracie always has my back, and I’ll always have hers. She has the biggest personality, and she has this glow about her,” Klose said. “She has such a huge impact on the lives of so many. Please keep her in your thoughts and prayers.

“Enough beauty sleep, Gracie. We miss you.”

“We are so thankful for everyone who has helped and continues to support Gracie and her family,” said friend and classmate Lyndsey Miller. “We hope everybody will keep praying for our dear friend and her family.”

Marie Davis noted the community has come together through a candlelight vigil in the park, making and selling bracelets and T-shirts, donations from individual businesses and private individuals.

“It’s all in God’s time and according to God’s will,” she said. “It’s going to be baby steps. I know it will take a long time, and we’ll all just have to be patient.”