We started this site for our love of music, along the way we have all made connections with those we now consider our friends. For me, talking with Sonny Vincent on the phone will always be a highlight . Ben , told us a few weeks back about this horrible tragedy and my thoughts are to share this with all of you in the hope that we can help Sonny and his family in this time of great need…
Hi folks my name is Sonny Vincent. Some of you may know me from my music, tours and albums. . Most don’t know my real name, it is Robert Ventura. My son and his family need help. On Sunday January 2, 2016 our family was in a tragic accident. My son Robert Ventura, Sarah Ventura, and their son. ( my grandson) Cayden Ventura (Age 9) were in a gas explosion that ignited into a blazing fire.Their injuries and the burns are extensive, The burns are 3rd degree and emcompas 50% of Roberts body,50% of Caydens and the Mom suffers with 80%. They are each currently in the Burn Intensive Care Unit at Winston Salem Medical Center, and are on life support struggling for their lives. This fund is set up to help them get on their feet after their lengthy recovery and to help them through their rehabilitation. The explosion/fire destroyed everything they owned. There are several family members who are here supporting them. We despreartely need urgent assistance in taking care of them. Our immediate needs only include food, transportation, and shelter. The rest of this fund will be given to Robert, Sarah and Cayden.
A special note is that Roberts father is the Musician Sonny Vincent,
March 30, 2016-
I want to thank the people who have generously contributed to this fund for my family. Without your kindness they really would be nearly on the street. I can’t properly express our gratitude. Please know we feel you standing beside us.
On January 3rd 2016 my family was retiring for the evening in their apartment, suddenly a terrible gas explosion/ fire broke out. They were critically burned and injured, their apartment was completely destroyed, the blast blew off the entire front of the building. All three of them were completely tragically burned with extensive 3rd degree deep tissue burns. Robert my son and Cayden my 9 year old grandson with around 50% of their bodies destroyed with third-degree burns and Sarah ( Roberts wife, Cayden’s mom) with 80% to 90% . As their memories are coming back to them they report to me that they ran out of the apartment to the front lawn and literally saw their flesh falling off their bodies. Ambulances and a helicopter brought them to hospitals and they’ve been fighting ever since. I have been here between the two hospitals taking care of them for 3 months so far and its clear now it will be a long road ahead. Because their place was completely destroyed, my daughter Michelle and myself have been in the process of getting them a new rental home to go to when they’re all discharged from the hospital. It hasn’t been easy to find a place because we needed a house or apartment in the same school district that Cayden had been going to. We finally have found a home and signed a lease. With the money that we have collected so far I was able to pay many months rent in advance for them.As I said it will be a long road to recovery for them, they will never be the same.All of them have nearly full body skin grafts, Cayden has a full face graft as well and Sarah may lose her legs. Its tragic and tears flow each day.Without the support of friends and everyones donations we would not be able to make it.Thank you all from the bottom of my heart I feel you standing beside us, that means so much.
What would we have done without you? I’ll give you an example, the Red Cross has given us a gift card for $200 ( thats two hundred).I was thankful for that but I thought they would help way more. You folks have been helpingu from tge begining throughout this whole ordeal. I have left my normal life in Holland and now serve them and caretake night and day. At first we were all in Winston- Salem and now I’ m with Cayden at his rehab in Charlotte but I am still going back to Winston- Salem periodically. My son Robert was discharged from Winston- Salem recently.Dominic my 20 year old other grandson from Virginia stayed with Robert in Winston Salem,helping, watching over his Dad, soothing and caregiving. Upon Roberts discharge Dominic went home to Virginia for a break and he needed to put back some of the pieces of his own life.. But all of us, myself, Dominic and Michelle thought it was too early for Robert to be sent out of the hospital. We couldn’t understand why they were discharging him so early, in such a weak condition. Later we found out it was because Medicaid has caps on how much they are willing to spend on him. He was discharged to my daughter who has a very small apartment near Ashville ( we are still trying to outfit the newely leased house with beds and all the items a family needs in a home). My son Robert still had many wounds and he wasn’t physically ready to be sent home. Also his mental condition was unsure. One example is he couldn’t remember that my daughter had brought him to the doctor and he insisted on seeing the medicine bottle with the date for her to prove he had been to the doctors. My daughter was changing his dressings and helping him stand, shower him, dress him, fed him by hand and doing everything he needed for his care. I am very proud of Michelle,she gave Robert her every waking hour, everything from rubbing his feet that were progressively losing feeling, shaving him and taking care of all his wishes and needs. Robert and Michelle grew up together, I was a single dad and they were rarely apart. After a week or so Rob had a fall. He was leaning over to pick something up. Now he had to go back to the hospital. They are all still hospitalized but I still need to keep preparing a home for them.One good part about Robert being back in the hopital is when they first discharged Robert and sent him to Michelle, Michelle had to choose between having a nurse help her for a couple of hours every other day or putting Rob back in physical therapy. She chose the nursing because medicade would not pay for both. Now he is in the hospital he is getting both, but how to pay the bills is one of my challenges.
Cayden is in real trouble because his hands completely froze, as I said in the last update.His hands were completely burned, no skin remained on his fingers and the top of his hands. But now the skin grafts have constricted and the bones are twised and displaced. As if wet leather golves were put into the oven or a dryer to dry them. They constricted, shrunk. Now he has virtually no use of his hands. I am trying to schedule a new surgery for his hands because that’s what they say he needs, but getting them to schedule that is becoming incredibly difficult .Weeks slip by, I’m doing my best but it seems like I’m fighting a system that is all chewed up.
Some of you may know that being a caregiver is a full-time dedication but what turns out to be the most frustrating and emotionaly draining aspect of all this is trying to navigate and get to the point to where Cayden, Rob and Sarah are getting the best care. Sarah has Sarah G attending to her and caring for her on most weekends and Sarah’s mom ‘ Sue’ is also there often by her side. Sarah is still in good hands at the Intensive Care Burn Unit in Winston Salem, but we still don’t know if she will survive.Just thinking of that brings all us all to tears. Its really not easy for us folks. We don’t want to have to tell Cayden that his Mom is gone or tell Robert the Love of his life is gone. It’s incredibly sad. In the middle of all what we are doing we often break down when considering this. I must say that Cayden’s spirits are usually high, he’s a resilient boy….but again occasionally he still breaks down and crys. I don’t always tell him to be a ‘strong boy’, sometimes I tell him to let it out, I hold him in my arms and he crys for a long time.
My friends I thank you so very much for standing beside us. Also my friends in Europe, thank you so much. You probably don’t realize how it is over here in the USA for example folks in France in the same situation that we are in would be supported right away by many programs, and outreach systems. Thank you for knowing it’s different over here.
For us the only support we have is from the ‘ Angels’ who have directly donated and make it possible for us to make it through this tragedy. I can’t thank you enough without you we truly would be on our knees. I now have a place for them to live and although it’s completely empty, without furniture or anything, we are going forward with a positive attitude. Please if you possibly can help us a little more, please do, everything helps, thank you. – Sonny