LAKE CHARLES, LA (KPLC) - The community is coming together to help four year old Holden Gothia - the victim of an extreme case of child abuse at the hands of his mother. When he was just four weeks old she did the unthinkable.
"The mother was home in a drug binge and for whatever reason used a sharp edge and removed the four-week-old boy's penis and testicles by cutting them off," explained Sgt. Mark Kraus, Lake Charles Police.
During the initial injury his mother also severed his left femoral vein and punctured his left femoral artery. As a result his left leg is now shorter than his right and he walks with a limp.
Holden's mother was later convicted and a Texas judge sentenced her to 99 years in prison. Since then he has adjusted to life outside of Houston with his aunt and uncle who are raising him as their own. They've taken on the responsibility to see that his medical and psychological needs are met, even finding a doctor in Virginia who specializes in reconstructive surgery. The procedures come with a price tag of more than half a million dollars and is not covered by insurance or Medicaid.
"When I heard the story I just couldn't turn away," said Kit Wyatt, Chairman of Heroes For Holden. "He has family that lives here in Lake Charles and they approached us. It all just got underway and people began volunteering. Lake Charles Police stepped up. We're positive we can make a difference in his life."
Wyatt along with a handful of others founded "Heroes For Holden." They hope to raise more than half a million dollars in five years with annual fundraisers. Their first big event was Sunday at Cowboy Diamond. Holden was welcomed on the team and even got to throw out the first pitch.
This is just a prelude of things to come. On Sunday June 5th they're set to hold an All-Star Concert at Burton Coliseum. For $25 you'll get to see entertainers: Jerry Jeff Walker, Tracy Byrd, Wayne Toups, Zona Jones, Damon Troy, Foret Tradition, Gene Bourgeois, Davin James,Twangsters Union, and more to come. On tap a BBQ dinner: $8 a ticket. The community even has a chance to win a Ford F-150 - raffle tickets are $100 each, but there are only 600 tickets available.
"The money raised will help pay for all of his medical bills and psychological therapy he will need. But it's not going to happen without the help of the community," said Wyatt.
"I've been involved in a lot of things, but this is probably the most touching thing that I've ever been involved in and this is one of things we need to do as a community to support one another," said Kraus.
As the Lake Area adopts little Holden - the little baseball player is not only stealing bases, but he's stealing the hearts of everyone he meets.
"We say we are Heroes for Holden, that is just not the case. Holden is really our hero today," said Kraus.
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