Co-workers raise money to help teen injured in distracted driving crash

Updated: Thursday, March 7 2013, 07:05 AM EST
Co-workers raise money to help teen injured in distracted driving crash  story image
HOLLAND, Mich. (NEWSCHANNEL 3) – Friends and family are rallying around a Holland teen who was struck by a distracted driver.

18-year-old Brianne Payne of Holland remains in a coma. Now her co-workers are hosting a fundraiser in hopes that she will recover.

Just three weeks after Payne was struck on her way home from work, loved ones are still working to come to terms with the crash.

“It’s been extremely, extremely hard,” said Devon Lyons, who grew up with Payne, “going from thinking we were going to be celebrating birthdays to, in a split second, something is wrong.”

Now her co-workers are helping to raise funds to support the teen’s medical bills.

“We knew we needed to do something, we just weren’t sure what,” said Sara Hood, manager at Bagger Dave’s in Holland.

On Wednesday night Bagger Dave’s in Holland is hosting ‘Burgers for Bri.’ They’re raising money for Payne’s family to stay near her in Grand Rapids, hoping she’ll pull out of her coma.

“In the last week she’s really been trying to open her eyes and she’s been responsive,” said Lyons.

Sources tell Newschannel 3 that a distracted driver who was texting behind the wheel, missed a red light and crashed into Payne at 136th and Riley Street in Holland on February 12th.

Payne had plans to attend Eastern Michigan University in the fall and her co-workers at Bagger Dave’s are hopeful she’ll continue to make progress towards recovery.

“It was a horrible thing that happened, she’s an amazing person, and she’s been a huge part of us here,” said Hood.

The fundraiser started at 5:00 pm Wednesday and continues through 9:00 pm. Servers are donating their tips and Bagger Dave's was donating 15 percent of sales toward Payne’s recovery.

Those who can’t make it to Bagger Dave’s on Wednesday night can still help via a donation box that will be inside the restaurant for the next several days.
Co-workers raise money to help teen injured in distracted driving crash
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