Employees at Tampa's Dough bakery are rallying around a co-worker injured in a hit-and-run accident last Friday.
Brandon Lawrence, an assistant manager at Dough, was riding his bicycle to work his overnight shift at the time of the accident.
“I was heading to work on North Boulevard and I was going through the intersection on Main," said Lawrence. “I had a green light and the driver opposite me was turning left onto main and they collided with me and kept going.”
Lawrence, a USF student, called 911 as he lay on the side of the road.
“There’s a fracture in my hand, my left foot is fractured,” said Lawrence. “My patella was fractured and shattered. That must've been what I landed on."
His manager Tina Contes said it is heartbreaking to watch one of their own suffer after such an incident.
“It’s terrible, I can’t imagine the pain he’s in, all the stress going through his mind,” Contes.
The team at the bakery is coming together to help Lawrence get back on his feet and onto his bike. He will have weeks of physical therapy ahead and they want to raise funds and awareness so other cyclists won't have to go through the same ordeal.
"People drive their cars like they're toys and it's not just drivers, it's everyone pedestrians, cyclists and drivers acting irresponsibly,” he said.
But even in all of his pain, Lawrence doesn't have any ill will against the driver. He just wants them to come forward so he can get back in the kitchen at Dough.
“I don’t have any vengeful feelings in me,” said Lawrence. “I just, I wish they could take responsibility for the damage they caused me.”
Dough in South Tampa will begin selling Brandon's "Bee" doughnuts on Sunday, Nov. 1. The proceeds from these doughnuts will benefit Lawrence and his recovery.
Dough will also host a benefit on Wednesday, Nov. 4 from 6 - 9 p.m. The event is free and open to the public.
It includes a silent auction with donated items from local restaurants and shops, a raffle (four prizes will be given away: $100 gift card to Dough, $150 gift card to Datz, $150 gift card to Roux, and a basket of Datz and Dough retail goodies), and bicycle safety information from History Bike Tampa. Brandon "Bee" doughnuts will be for sale.
The GoFundMe donation page can be found at this link, as well as on Dough's FB page and Datz's FB page.
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