Four Indian Creek boys are fighting cancer, and the community is rallying to help the families. Schools, businesses and civic organizations have raised money to pay for gas cards and food to help with unforeseen costs that go with treating the disease.
A.J. Jones, 14, Chase Smith, 13, Zane Davidson, 11, and Grant Harding, 4, all find themselves in similar situations. Their days consist of immunity-boosting medications, ongoing rounds of chemotherapy treatment and doctor appointments. Even a slight fever is cause for concern and often requires a trip to the hospital.
The focus for them and their families is solely on beating this disease. It takes precedence over work, repairing the home, even buying groceries. That’s why people in Trafalgar and southern Johnson County have come forward to take care of many minor details for this family.
A local heating and cooling contractor offered to install high-quality filtration systems for two families for free to help improve the air quality in their homes. Teachers at Indian Creek Intermediate School, where Zane is a fifth-grader, wore gray-and-orange InZane shirts for their school photos this year. Some have volunteered to go to Zane’s home to help him keep up with his classmates, since he’s too sick to be in school.
Tami Franklin, a Trafalgar resident and Grant’s aunt, rallied a group of local residents to create a support group, “Don’t Take Things for GRANTed.” They designed T-shirts, stickers and bracelets to sell to help his family. Organizers put on garage sales, charity dinners and silent auctions for additional funds.
The Greenwood Fire Department, which Matt Davidson works for, formed a donation foundation to help the family cover gas money to Riley Hospital for Children, meals during his son’s chemotherapy and other incidental costs associated with the treatment.
Local businesses, such as Dunn Hardware, Dugan Air, McDonald’s and Mutual Savings Bank, chipped in money to go toward a fund supporting the four families. The idea was to stand together with their neighbors to help the four families involved in any way they could.
Money raised helped pay for a night out for A.J., Grant, Chase and Zane on Feb. 7 that would be fun without exposing them to potentially dangerous sicknesses. Indian Creek schools worked with the Indiana Pacers and Compton Strategies, the host of the Hoosier Invitational, to have the four boys sit in a suite at Bankers Life Fieldhouse for the Indian Creek vs. Edinburgh basketball game. They rode in a limousine to Indianapolis and watched their home team in luxury, all in a protective environment that wouldn’t put their health at risk.
The effort is indicative of the efforts that people have gone to for A.J., Grant, Zane and Chase. The outpouring of emotional and financial support is a testament to the compassion of the community.
“It makes you feel like a community is supposed to feel like,” Matt Davidson said. “Even though everyone is busy with their own lives, we still live in a place that will take time out just to help other people.”
We agree, and we are heartened that this outpouring of compassion is not unusual. It defines Johnson County communities.
Trafalgar and much of southern Johnson County have rallied around four Indian Creek students with cancer.
The outpouring of emotional and financial support is a testament to the compassion of the community.
Efforts are ongoing to support Indian Creek students A.J. Jones, Grant Harding, Zane Davidson and Chase Smith.
Here’s how to help
What: The Indian Creek High School athletics department is selling orange “#Bravestrong” shirts with all four boys’ names on the back.
Cost: T-shirts are $8
Where to help: Shirts can be purchased at the Indian Creek athletics office. Proceeds benefit the boys and their families.
What: Indian Creek Sharks, the school’s swim club, is selling apparel in support of Chase Smith and his family that bear the phrase “#Chasestrong” and “We Are #Chasestrong.”
Cost: Ranges from $10 to $38.
Where to help: Items are available at icasharks.org.
Don’t Take Things for GRANTed
What: In support of Grant Harding and his family, a committee has been formed to create and sell T-shirts and bracelets, as well as take donations.
Cost: Shirts range from $10 to $16, with bracelets costing $2.
Where to help: Order or make donations by contacting Tami Franklin at 306-9438, or go to donttakethingsforgranted.com