GRAFTON— Often times Grafton is looked down on for being a small town, but that small town feel is exactly what sets the community apart.
The town is populated by countless kindhearted individuals that are always willing to lend a helping hand to one another, and now that one of their own beloved families has been struck with misfortune, the people of Grafton are stepping up, coming together and taking action to assist a family in need.
On June 6, the Shaw family’s world was turned upside down, when they lost their home and all of their belongings in a devastating fire, that was said to be the result of electrical transmission line that was improperly placed.
By the grace of God, the Shaw family, consisting of Clint and Olivia Shaw, and their two sons Alden and Bryson were away at the time of the incident and thankfully spared from any personal injury, but the scene left behind was heartbreaking.
With the Shaw family left to clear the debris, friends and family were quick to rally together to assist with clean up and recovery efforts.
The Grafton High School girls track team also rallied together in support of coach O. Shaw and her family, by holding a roadblock last week, to help raise money for the family to cover their day-today expenses.
“I was overwhelmed by the generosity of folks that I had barley had conversations with, who were so willing to pitch in with bags of clothes and donations to First Community Bank,” C. Shaw expressed.
“’This is what small towns do’ is a mantra that has been adopted and has resonated in the Shaw rebuild,” shared local Daniel Dowdy. “From monetary donations, to the meal train food deliveries to clothing and toy replacement, the community has truly rallied together.”
But, the townspeople aren’t stopping there.
Residents Mike Nestor and Julie Dowdy also sprang into action and came up with the idea of hosting a benefit event for the family.
The Shaw Family Benefit at the Grafton High School Softball Field is slated for Sunday, June 27.
“The evening will consist of Taylor County’s finest: the youth coaches,” D. Dowdy noted.
Youth baseball and softball coaches alike will take to the diamond going head-to-head, single elimination style, for some friendly competition in order to raise money for the Shaws.
According to organizers, four teams have been compiled with county baseball and softball coaches and the event will consist of three contests; teams one and two will take to the field at 3:00 p.m., while teams three and four will battle it out at 5:00 p.m.
The winner of each of those match ups will advance and play each other at 7:00 p.m.
Throughout the evening folks can stop by and watch the excitement happening in the field, and also grab a snack from the concession stand or take a chance on winning 50/50 drawings, raffles and more.
“Please come out and support the Shaw family, as you see the coaches of your kids take it all to the field for some elite sportsmanship, and back aches on Monday morning,” joked D. Dowdy.
For those who can’t make it out on Sunday, but would still like to assist the family, donations can be made at First Community Bank to the Shaw Fund, or donations can be made online via a Go Fund Me account, found by visiting, https://gofund.me/4ce5815b.
Addiitonionally D. Dowdy has organized a t-shirt fundraiser for the family through Custom Ink.
The cost of the custom made shirts, donning the phrase “What small towns do” are $15. After the cost of printing the shirts, all proceeds will be donated to the Shaw family.
Orders can be placed by visiting https://www.customink.com/fundraising/the-shaw-tshirt-fund?fbclid=IwAR2ZSq_Pps9juMy-sEnnZIQJJtEygWK5ehKgVt8YMHvs0OE2FQtwHuYe4n4.