September 24, 2007

Friends of Howard Lake man working on October benefit

Friends, family of Gary Streich are looking for auction items, help

By Lynda Jensen

Gary Streich of Howard Lake was on his way home from his niece’s wedding in Winsted when he lost control of his Blazer as he swerved to avoid a deer July 28.

“His truck went airborne and was launched into a tree on a gravel road not far from his home,” his daughter Carrie Dircks said.

Luckily, two good Samaritans were in the yard of the house across the street, saw the deer and the accident, and called 911 right away. Streich was airlifted directly from the scene and brought to HCMC, she said.

His initial trauma evaluation revealed a shattered shin bone, a fractured thigh bone, crushed pelvis, two broken lumbar vertebrae, broken ribs, a puncture wound, and numerous significant lacerations including a long cut down the side of his head.

He underwent nearly six hours of surgery to pin and plate the bones of his left leg, she said.

The doctors were unable to repair the pelvis and have left it to slowly heal as best it can on its own. Secondary evaluations have determined that he also damaged the rotator cuff of his left shoulder and will require additional surgeries.

“He spent two weeks at HCMC before he was transferred to the post-acute unit of the New Hope Good Samaritan Ambassador Care Center where he has been undergoing physical therapy since,” she added.

As the breadwinner of the family, the accident took a tremendous toll on the family financially.

“Gary will be out of work indefinitely,” Dircks said. “The medical bills are astronomical.”

Aside from that, the vehicle he was driving was completely totaled.

His disability benefits will not cover his expenses, either.

Gary’s wife, Rita, has been working full time but in the beginning had to take time off to be with him. Gary also has two adult daughters, a son-in-law and three grandchildren.

Those who wish to check on Streich’s condition may visit Gary’s website at www.caringbridge.org/visit/garystreich for updates.

Items sought for Gary Streich benefit in October

Friends and family of Gary Streich are looking for sports memorabilia, craft items, gift baskets, timeshares/get-aways, new tools, quilts, gift certificates, or services you would like to donate for the benefit. Those interested should contact Mary @ (763) 228-2344 or via e-mail at mary@tmcindustries.com or Jill at 763-658-4206.

Cash donations can be sent to Citizens State Bank, Waverly, c/o Gary Streich Benefit.

The benefit is set for Saturday, Oct. 20 at the Waverly Village Hall. Silent Auction will be from 4 to 7 p.m. Kids games, cake walk, raffle, food throughout the silent auction with a dance to follow.

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