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Porterdale hosts Tyler Head benefit as part of St. Patrick's Day festivities

Tyler Head and his parents,  Archie and Deborah Head, are shown with former Atlanta Braves baseball star and current co-host of Good Day Atlanta television show Ron Gant who interviewed Head during his rehabilitation at Shepherd Spinal Center. --Special photo

Tyler Head and his parents, Archie and Deborah Head, are shown with former Atlanta Braves baseball star and current co-host of Good Day Atlanta television show Ron Gant who interviewed Head during his rehabilitation at Shepherd Spinal Center. --Special photo

COVINGTON — The folks in Porterdale are preparing for their annual St. Patrick’s Day celebration on March 16, and a highlight of this year’s event will be a fundraising event to benefit Newton High School wrestler Tyler Head.

Head, 16, suffered serious neck and spinal cord injuries on Dec. 29 during a wrestling match and has been hospitalized since that time. After undergoing emergency surgery at Atlanta Medical Center, he has been at Shepherd Spinal Center for therapy and rehabilitation.

According to Whitney West, organizer of the fundraiser, the event will follow the city’s parade, which is set for noon.

“We have three country singers performing — Wesley Cook, Thomas Tillman and Dustin Bragg,” West said. “These three gentlemen are doing this out of the goodness of their heart. Both Cook and Tillman have just recently signed on with a record label.”

But the highlight of the afternoon will be Cow Chip Bingo, which consists of 500 squares that sell for $20 each. A cow, furnished by the University of Georgia, will be confined to a 20-foot by 25-foot pen with the squares. The lucky person who owns the square foot where the cow deposits her “chip” could win up to $4,000, according to West.

Head, who is not set to be released from Shepherd Spinal until March 19, will be allowed to leave the hospital for two hours between 1 and 3 p.m. to attend the event.

“We are still needing prize donations for the raffle and still have bingo squares for sale,” West said. “We also have T-shirts for $25 and silicone ‘Fight Like Tyler’ bracelets for $5.”

Those interested in purchasing squares should go to Fightliketyler.com for instructions on buying them.

The Head family faces expenses, including deductibles and other items not covered by insurance, of more than $15,000; a non-electric wheelchair and other equipment such as a crane to lower Tyler into bath and bed; home renovations; a handicap-accessible van; and an iPad.

West said there are multiple options for a donation: a specific item needed from the list above; a cash donation; or a gift for the auction. Financial donations can be made by checks, payable to The Tyler Head Benefit or online at 222.fightliketyler.com. Most donations can qualify as a tax deduction. West said donations of items to be used in the raffle should be received by March 15.

For more information, call 770-855-8517.