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Dealership gives SUV to family of boy injured in playground accident

October 15, 2021
When Alex Hook leaves the hospital for his home in southeast Wisconsin, he will travel in style — in a vehicle donated to his family by Ray Chevrolet in Fox Lake.
The 6-year-old suffered a severe brain injury on Sept. 10 when an object projected from a lawnmower hit him in the back of the head while he was at school recess.
Hook suffered a fractured skull and bleeding in his brain. A piece of bone was removed from his brain, according to a GoFundMe page established to help his family cover unforeseen medical costs.
Anticipating his return home, his family signaled their need for a vehicle larger than their Jeep Cherokee to accommodate the boy’s wheelchair and ease his entry and exit.
Ray Scarpelli Jr., owner of Ray Chevrolet, was on it. "The family has been a customer of ours and when we (heard their story), we said, ‘Let’s help somebody who can really use it right now,’ " Scarpelli said.
Scarpelli followed updates on Hook’s condition and began working with the family to find a larger vehicle for the family.
The dealership found a 2018 Chevrolet Traverse that would fit the bill. "The advantage (of this model) is that the back seats fold down and there’s room for his wheelchair," Scarpelli said. "Plus, all-wheel drive makes it safe."
Michelle Koertgen, Alex’s aunt, said the family assumed they would get some sort of deal on a used vehicle, but on Oct. 9 they found out it was a gift. She exclaimed, "It was a $42,000 gift!"
Since the accident, other social media and community event fundraising campaigns have come to the aid of the family to help with unexpected expenses. "It’s been non-stop, wonderful and overwhelming," Koertgen said.
A local motorcycle group is organizing a fundraising event on Oct. 23 to help the Hook family. "Just bring people together and show support for the family," said nearby resident Justin Guerrero.