"Shall I tell you what I find beautiful about you? You are at your very best when things are worst."
- Jeff Bridges, as the character of the 1984 film of the same name, 'Starman'
SUMMIT, NJ - Less than two weeks after the establishment of a GoFundMe page, which coincided with a TAPinto Summit article that chronicled the immense challenges faced by Billy MacAdam -- one of the Hilltop City's own and a true 'Good Samaritan' -- the town known for its heart and benevolence has rallied in a major way to support one of their own who has walked, and has been walking, a difficult road.
Spearheaded by The Other Fellow First Foundation to assist the retired Summit Auxiliary Police Officer, pledged donations to the site have now have surpassed $21,000 and are still climbing toward a goal of $25,000. A significant added boost beyond the GoFundMe total is coming courtesy of the Knights of Columbus, who have announced that they will direct all proceeds from their annual golf tournament, to be held this coming this June, to assist MacAdam.
“The family is so grateful and appreciative of all those who donated to Billy," said his sister-in-law, Lisa MacAdam. Their support, generosity, and kindness is helping him to get closer to regaining his independence and he no longer feels helpless, which, I think is motivating him to work harder in physical therapy. I suggest that anyone who would like to show their support for Billy without donating, should consider sending him a note of encouragement.”
MacAdam's challenges, which include undergoing a heart transplant, being on dialysis and needing a kidney transplant, as well as losing his residence, were amplified beyond what anyone should bear when he -- after stopping to help what he thought were male and female stranded pedestrians on Route 24 -- suffered multiple serious injuries, including a broken femur, broken hip, and a bleed on the brain when the man he stopped to help dragged MacAdam through his car window and severely assaulted him. MacAdam spent ten days in the hospital and five weeks in rehab to learn how to walk again, which he now is able to do with the assistance of a cane while undergoing continuing outpatient physical therapy.
The largesse of the Hilltop City does not surprise Brett Haire who, along with Jordan Glatt and Jim Greberis, founded the Other Fellow First Foundation.
"Summit is a little city with a huge heart. The outpouring of community generosity is extremely gratifying and demonstrates how a compelling story of personal misfortune can, with the help of
a vital and well respected local paper, turn into a very compelling story about the character and generosity of a community determined to protect one its own." said Haire. "Community adversity doesn't develop character, it reveals it."
Speaking on behalf of the Knights of Columbus John Dougherty, retired Summit Police Department Captain, said, "The Knights of Columbus was founded on community service, fraternity and patriotism. Billy McAdams epitomizes each of these principals. We are honored to be able to help him in his time of need."
With wind in the sails of the effort to assist MacAdam, and in light of his ongoing health issues, the Other Fellow First Foundation, which exists to help Summit families in distress, is asking the community to keep the momentum going by sending any gift / assistance to:
Other Fellow First Foundation
c/o Brave Asset Management
47 Summit Avenue
Summit, NJ 07901
Or, those wishing to help can visit and share the GoFundMe page located at gofundme.com/billys-good-samaritan-fund.