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View Full Version : A good buddy of mine needs our help!!


Corner-Carver
10-23-2002, 12:25 AM
Some of you may remember Robert LaFontaine (Hi-Psi, had the Turbo Trans Am that was running 11's at the SCMC/GaFBA event in Jackson, also ran his T-Type one event). Robert was in a VERY SERIOUS car wreck this past weekend. To make matters worse, he has no health insurance, the driver of the vehicle was uninsured, and Robert only had Liability on his Regal T-type. The GAFBA is setting up a fund to help him out since he is expected to be in the hospital from ~2 MONTHS. Hopefully between the GAFBA, turbobuick.com, a few other boards and us, we can help out in some small way with the finances. Between a few of my buddies and myself, we will be completing his head/cammed LT1 Vette for which he was going to the parts store for.

This excerpt was taken from another board:

Saturday afternoon, Hi-psi (Robert) was involved in a bad car accident. He is still alive, but he is really messed up. Mike and I found out Saturday evening, and drove down to Augusta. We didnt know if he was going to pull through the night.
He was driving his Regal to the parts stored to pick up something for his vette, when an old 70's model cargo van hit him head on doing about 50mph. The driver of the van was trying to avoid a DOG. Roberts car was pretty much broken in half. When the first witness arrive to Robert, he was unconscious and his eyes were open and rolled back into his head. He had stopped breathing at one point, but managed to save him. They had to get the jaws of life to get him out of the car. The steering wheel was in the passengers side, and the dash was on Roberts lap.
Robert has suffered numerous head injuries and lacerations, he also has a broken hip, broken leg, broken jaw, broken chin and has stitches on all the above mentioned areas. They did 8 hours of surgery on him to repair his hip and his leg. His left arm was severed so bad, that he has about a 12 inch laceration all the way from the middle part of the bottom of his arm to the bicep. He has yet to move his left arm. He cannot move it at all. They have been worried about more bleeding on the brain, but the c-scans look ok for right now. This morning, Robert woke up, and was unable to move his left leg or the left side of his mouth, along with the left arm. We still dont know what has caused this.
Now, what makes ALL of this even worse, Robert had no health insurance through his place of work. He always said he would never need it because he never got sick. He only has liability on his car, and even though the driver of the van was charged, this ******* had NO insurance, and was driving around with a stolen tag. It is looking as if he will not survive this accident as well. The police informed Roberts mother, that even though it was NOT Roberts fault, it looks as if they will be responsible for all these medical bills, because that ******* in the van was a ****ing retard!
It looks, as long as he stops having set backs like he has this morning, he will remain in the ICU for a few more days. They originally put him in the Shock Trauma ward until Sunday afternoon, then transferred him to regular ICU. Once he leaves ICU, he will be taken to a Rehab type hospital to learn to walk and function again. We are expecting Robert to be under the care of a hospital for at LEAST 2 months. I will be posting pictures of the Regal tonight once Mike gets home from Augusta.
Please, pray for him, and ask everyone you know to pray....... he needs all the prayers he can get.
We all need to pull together, and try and help him. Donations, maybe a fund raiser of some sort. ANYTHING WILL HELP! Please, everyone....... let's help Robert out. He would have done the same for any of you


I'll post the fund information as soon as I can.

Corner-Carver
10-23-2002, 12:28 AM
Here are a few pics of the car:


http://image.inkfrog.com/pix/LFUEL/DSC00676.JPG
http://image.inkfrog.com/pix/LFUEL/DSC00677.JPG
http://image.inkfrog.com/pix/LFUEL/DSC00675.JPG
http://image.inkfrog.com/pix/LFUEL/DSC00670.JPG

Corner-Carver
10-24-2002, 10:46 AM
Here's the latest. Robert was able (barely) to get up and walk yesterday. He has just started getting feeling back in the left side of his body for the first time. He will probably be moved out of the hospital room at the end of the week/first of next week to the Walton Rehabilitation center where he will have to learn to function/walk again. Speech therapist think there is a good possiblity he will recover (broken jaw, broken chin, severe concussion) after his rehabilitation.

The bad news: It looks as if he will have a HUGE medical bill from all this.:(


He's lucky to be alive. The good thing is, he's already talking (as best as possible) about getting his Turbo Trans Am finished (gonna be wickedly fast) and what's needed to finish his "new" daily driver Vette (now that the T-Type is totaled) so he is in good spirits. :)


Send donations (any amount would be GREATLY appreciated) to one of the two:

National Bank of Commerce
LaFontaine Relief Fund
Att: John Pender
1911 Grayson Highway
Grayson, Ga. 30017

or via PayPal at LaFontaineRelief@earthlink.net

NO 5 OH
10-25-2002, 05:10 AM
I'm really sorry to hear this Paul... I know you and Robert usually give each other a hard time being on opposite sides of the fence so to speak, but I know pretty much that you and him are good friends. It's really sad considering the circumstances... and his family having to front the bill.

It's also sad that you haven't gotten any replies here other than me... of course it really doesn't surprise me given this is a "Cobra" board and you or Robert don't particularly own a "Cobra" either. To think that the "upstanding members" of this board will organize a fund drive for people with broken cars but they don't have much to say about someone getting hurt in a Turbo Regal. If he was drving a Cobra they'd be on this like a pack of wild dogs :rolleyes:

Ken 01-Cobra
10-25-2002, 10:33 AM
Originally posted by NO 5 OH
It's also sad that you haven't gotten any replies here other than me... of course it really doesn't surprise me given this is a "Cobra" board and you or Robert don't particularly own a "Cobra" either. To think that the "upstanding members" of this board will organize a fund drive for people with broken cars but they don't have much to say about someone getting hurt in a Turbo Regal. If he was drving a Cobra they'd be on this like a pack of wild dogs :rolleyes:
Whoa dude! WAY out of line!

I didn't reply because I was at a loss as to what to say! I don't know either of these folks, though I am sure they are fine people. Accidents are terrible things, and when someone is hurt this badly, it is always a tragedy! I am sorry the gentleman was hurt. I am sorry he didn't have insurance. I am not in a position to do a lot to help at the moment. Does that make me evil?

The fund information is posted for anyone who wishes to help. Not everyone will jump in and say "I'm sending money" or post condolances. That doesn't mean that they don't care, and it doesn't mean that they are not helping! And after seeing the club help a US SERVICEMAN with a problem, I wouldn't be surprised to see some help from this club.

But you REALLY ought to think about what you say before you say it! You've basically implied that because everyone is probably shocked by it all, they are a bunch of self serving a-holes who don't care. I can tell you from personal experience THAT is far from the truth. So take your tude and go find somewhere where it plays!

Corner-Carver
10-25-2002, 10:55 AM
Guys,

I see where both of you are coming from and I understand both sides. My intention was to present this to the club since he joined us for all the events at Jackson. He participated in two if I remember correctly but was at all of them. I hoped that the Cobra club would show some compassion for participants of it's events. We have done so in the past for other individuals. My plan was not to raise every single penny needed for Robert's bill soley from the Cobra club members. BTW, he stated several times that the members at the events at Jackson were "a close nit group that seems to have a relaxed, good-natured time whenever they get together." He also was estatic that the GAFB/SCMC events were as relaxed and filled with good natured ribbing as they were. He honestly enjoyed the events as we all did.

He has been receiveing help from the corvetteforum.com, GAFBA, Barrettraceway.com, turbobuick.com, as well as a few other boards. There is also a car show benefit in Atlanta (sponsored by Hooter's) that will used to raise some money to help offset SOME of the medical bills. I just thought it would be a nice gesture for our club to show support as well.

BTW, he's doing alot better now. He will probably be released into the rehabalitation clinic this weekend.

Ken 01-Cobra
10-25-2002, 10:58 AM
Originally posted by Corner-Carver
BTW, he's doing alot better now. He will probably be released into the rehabalitation clinic this weekend.
That is very good news! I do hope he gets better quickly and recovers fully!

98banana
10-25-2002, 11:15 AM
Originally posted by NO 5 OH
It's also sad that you haven't gotten any replies here other than me... of course it really doesn't surprise me given this is a "Cobra" board and you or Robert don't particularly own a "Cobra" either. To think that the "upstanding members" of this board will organize a fund drive for people with broken cars but they don't have much to say about someone getting hurt in a Turbo Regal. If he was drving a Cobra they'd be on this like a pack of wild dogs :rolleyes:

If that's not the biggest bunch of crap I've read all day, then I don't know what is. Do you honestly believe that? Why do you hang around here if you think we are like that? I've never met you personally, but unless you have an explanation of those statements, my view of you just hit rock bottom.

I think Paul knows most of us well enough to realize that those statements are way off base. Nobody in this club gives a crap about what a person drives when it comes to something like this.

And you may want to keep in mind that talking and posting about a broken car is much easier than talking or posting about something like Robert's ordeal.

I'm sure if somebody wants to contribute then they will. The fact that nobody has responded to this thread doesn't mean they don't care. I care, but I don't deal with these situations very well so I don't respond.

I'm also so broke I can't even pay attention, so I can't contribute.

NO 5 OH
10-25-2002, 02:47 PM
Originally posted by 98banana
If that's not the biggest bunch of crap I've read all day, then I don't know what is. Do you honestly believe that? Why do you hang around here if you think we are like that? I've never met you personally, but unless you have an explanation of those statements, my view of you just hit rock bottom.


Umh, yeah... I do have an explantion for sure. Back in June I went with the club on the cruise-in to the Boone/Blowing Rock area. A friend of mine that was thinking about joining the club at the time (a fellow Cobra owner) wanted to go as well, but his car was in the body shop being fixed. I told him since he wanted to go he could drive my SVO to the event and participate.

We got to Arby's that morning and everybody was like "we're leaving" and nobody was really talkative. The ONLY two people to introduce themselves were Jeff and Tony. Everybody took off like a bat outta hell and we finally got caught back up with the pack 11 or so miles down the road. We get to the foot of the mountain and my SVO dies on my friend, and ONLY Tony was nice enough to turn around and see if there was anything he could do to help.

I leave the car on the side of the road... the rest of us jump in the Cobra and head up to meet with the rest of the club. We get there and this is how it goes... nobody talks to us at all, no offers of help with the car, what's wrong with it... nothing. We felt like "the little red stepchildren" in the corner. Twenty minutes later the club leaves with us still eating and we never meet up with them again. If this club is so "helpful" and "there for everybody" like they say they are... then where were the club members the next day taking the tank out of the car to replace the fuel pump :doubt:

And I feel for the guy who's car is broke right now... I'll probably send some money his way too. BUT he chose to modify it, and stuff happens as a result of modifications. If I blew the motor up in my 86 car then oh well... it's my fault, I'll fix it eventually. The reason you PAY big dollars to have the motor gone through is to be DONE PROPERLY. That means you go with a reputable shop or you do it yourself. Most people that have fast cars pay somebody else to do it anyways... don't have a CLUE how to properly tune one themselves.

And if you haven't noticed... that's why I'm never hardly on here anymore. I've got places to be and better things to do with my time than absolutely talk about nothing in general... go over to the member's only section and you'll see what I mean. There's other places on the web to go rather than hang out with a bunch of "wannabe Vette drivers" :rolleyes: :rolleyes:

MY .02

98banana
10-25-2002, 04:25 PM
We are all entitled to our opinions and I respect yours. And I have to agree with you about the Members Only section. I'm no longer a member so I can't go in there. Even if I could, I wouldn't. But, that doesn't mean that people don't have a right to babble endlessly on the forum. They don't do it elsewhere on the forum, so just don't go to that section.

I'm also sorry to hear about your misfortune at the cruise-in. I would have been one of the guys right there with Tony helping out, but I wasn't there. You need to keep in mind that the people that were there are NOT the entire club and your comments were directed to the entire club and members of this forum including me.

And, I do want to own and drive a vette. But I'll stick with my Mustang since I haven't seen a vette yet that can take me on the track. (I've never been passed by one...)

SilverStrike
10-25-2002, 04:40 PM
Let's slow down guys, I've never had to lock a thread and I don't want to start now..

No 5 OH~
I'm going to leave this thread alone for the time being, but personally I think you're being a bit harsh about the situation. Just because someone doesn't reply to a thread, doesn't mean they don't care. Even if they decided to contribute, why does that mean they have to toot their own horn on the forums?

Let's just all relax, and discuss this without generalizing all SCMC members..

Ken 01-Cobra
10-25-2002, 06:56 PM
Originally posted by NO 5 OH
<snip>
We got to Arby's that morning and everybody was like "we're leaving" and nobody was really talkative. The ONLY two people to introduce themselves were Jeff and Tony. Everybody took off like a bat outta hell and we finally got caught back up with the pack 11 or so miles down the road. We get to the foot of the mountain and my SVO dies on my friend, and ONLY Tony was nice enough to turn around and see if there was anything he could do to help.
And how outgoing were you? You expected eveyone to line up and introduce themselves instead of you, being the newbies, going around and introducing yourself? I didn't have a problem the first time I showed up somewhere.

I leave the car on the side of the road... the rest of us jump in the Cobra and head up to meet with the rest of the club. We get there and this is how it goes... nobody talks to us at all, no offers of help with the car, what's wrong with it... nothing. We felt like "the little red stepchildren" in the corner. Twenty minutes later the club leaves with us still eating and we never meet up with them again. If this club is so "helpful" and "there for everybody" like they say they are... then where were the club members the next day taking the tank out of the car to replace the fuel pump :doubt:
Dunno about this. I wasn't there. Had I been, I don't think you would have been stranded unless you came off as you're coming off here. Had you come off like that, you could have walked.

And I feel for the guy who's car is broke right now... I'll probably send some money his way too. BUT he chose to modify it, and stuff happens as a result of modifications. If I blew the motor up in my 86 car then oh well... it's my fault, I'll fix it eventually. The reason you PAY big dollars to have the motor gone through is to be DONE PROPERLY. That means you go with a reputable shop or you do it yourself. Most people that have fast cars pay somebody else to do it anyways... don't have a CLUE how to properly tune one themselves.
I'll tell you what, as the guy who started the fund, I'll make an exception for you. Send the money to your buddies fund instead. You seem to be the type that would feel you were "owed" something anyway, and that AIN'T what it is about! If you don't get that perhaps a SERVICEMAN that spent his savings to build the motor MIGHT not be able to recover from a motor blowup in less than 1000 miles as quickly as you and me, then you don't get it. Forget the money. You ain't been there, so you do what is right for you.

And if you haven't noticed... that's why I'm never hardly on here anymore. I've got places to be and better things to do with my time than absolutely talk about nothing in general... go over to the member's only section and you'll see what I mean. There's other places on the web to go rather than hang out with a bunch of "wannabe Vette drivers" :rolleyes: :rolleyes:

MY .02
Good...go hang with the others with a 'tude. I'm sure they will be JUST as supportive whenever you need it. As for the members only section, I don't post there either, but that doesn't mean I judge those who do. I don't feel I have that RIGHT! You got a bad case of "I know it all, and I ain't afraid to tell anyone" bud. The problem with that is none of us seldom DO know it all, and I'll tell you up front you most certainly do not! 2 cents is about what it is worth.

sn8kbit
10-25-2002, 11:14 PM
first, before i administer a little castor oil to a certain individual, let me say this:

paul, sorry to hear about him. as i was going to keep my thoughts to myself, me and the Man Upstairs have talked and i hope that little bit that i can do helps. also, sorry this thread has turned into what it has....

ken, after what you tried to do privately, apart from the club out of geniune concern, without wanting a "pat on the back" for it, and to have it bastardized like it has in this thread and contain yourself as well as you have, i have to commend you. i'd be way pissed. what you took upon yourself, in no way relates to this thread, and shouldn't.

now, for a bit of rememdy. sometimes you have to pop a child on the rear when stepping out of line. even though it's done with care and concern, it stings, and this is gonna sting some:

shannon, how dare you try to guilt trip anyone into publicly posting what some might want to keep private. does posting it make it count more or something? how do you know if some responded privately by either email or PM? you don't. not to mention that most of the more 'active' members are out in iowa, and have yet to see this.
seems to me a while back a certain individual went thru some problems of his own and had support and concern about him, without him knowing about it prior to this post:
http://www.svtcobraclub.com/svtbbs2/showthread.php?s=&threadid=1840
sounds like a bunch of vette owners there too, eh?(i know a couple of vette owners that would be offended at that comment also, by the way) this person's situation was discussed with concern, and just what is someone supposed to say, without trying to sound like a frickin cliche? at least concern and thoughts were shared in this particular individuals favor, regardless of whether or not this individual knew it or not.
and sorry you felt like a 5th wheel on your outing at the cruise. sometimes tho, you get out what you put in. there's enough pressure on the people responsible for putting these events on without having to add even more by holding someone's hand the entire time. the event is there for you to make of it what you can. sounds from your description that you expected everyone to come to you, instead of making the effort to include yourself. should people be sorry for that, no, i don't think so. events i go to i feel bad enough when i don't think i've made enough effort to meet everyone, or 'hang out' with them. i try, and that's what counts. in every group of people, especially in a close group as most of the NC/SC guys are, getting in the middle is going to take more effort on your part. you get out of it what you put in. may a year ago, i seem to remember a banana getting towed behind a ranger fall behind on the way to a drag strip. i fell back to keep him and the rest of the group in sight, made acquaintences with this banana-man, and i'm a better person for knowing him. and as far as i know, he didn't take offense to everyone 'taking off' either.
as far as the "member's only forum", well i'd say over 75% of your 1200 sum'odd posts are from that forum too. yeah, it can seem a bit trivial, non-sensical, even BS. but it's called bonding. while there's no need to exhaust bandwith publicly the way it is in that forum, it gives members a way to get to know each other and fall easily into step when meeting for the first time at events. some of my best friends came from BS'ing in that manner. not to mention i don't recall myself or anyone else twisting your arm to post there. matter of fact, i recall most trying to bring you up to speed to include you.....
(simply for reference, a couple of examples)
http://www.svtcobraclub.com/svtbbs2/showthread.php?s=&threadid=1140
http://www.svtcobraclub.com/svtbbs2/showthread.php?s=&threadid=1093

shannon, i gots nuthin but love for ya brutha, and don't regret one ounce of concern or words i've mentioned to you or others about you, regardless of how you've generalized and trivialized what we've done. this is simply to get you to think next time before you go and stuff both feet in your mouth like you have, and i'm embarassed and ashamed for you, if you don't have enough sense to be yourself.

Rich, it'd probably be a good idea to lock this one down my man....:(

Black Snake
10-26-2002, 12:49 AM
Dang Paul, I am sorry to hear about Robert. For the little that I talked to him at the Jackson drag days he seems like a really nice person. I will definitely keep him in my thoughts and prayers. Maybe we can do something for him at Jackson in November.

As far as the other comments in this postÖ Iíll bite my tongue. I donít post/hang out here much but I commented as soon as I saw the post. Iíve been too busy working on my car the past two weeks to post any sooner. Sorry. :moon:

Ken 01-Cobra
10-26-2002, 05:44 AM
Paul...please accept my apologies for what this thread has become. It should be about Robert, and his recovery.

Instead it has been hijacked by a thoughtless, arrogant individual who wishes to speak for people he obviously doesn't know. It is very difficult for me, who has seen first hand the way the members here really feel about people, to accept such a slight without response.

However, I am truly saddened at my part in this, and have said all I plan to say on the subject. Please keep us informed on Robert's progress.

NO 5 OH
10-26-2002, 04:58 PM
Originally posted by Ken 01-Cobra
And how outgoing were you? You expected eveyone to line up and introduce themselves instead of you, being the newbies, going around and introducing yourself? I didn't have a problem the first time I showed up somewhere.

I walked up and was going to introduce myself, but seeing as how we weren't there but five minutes before we left I don't think I had much time to meet everyone, now did I? Everybody took off flying and me and my friend running 75 or 80 mph finally caught up about 11 miles down the road.

Dunno about this. I wasn't there. Had I been, I don't think you would have been stranded unless you came off as you're coming off here. Had you come off like that, you could have walked.[/QUOTE]

I didn't come off like I did here. I'm one of the nicest guys you'll ever meet in person. I get sick of certain people I know on here saying there always there for each other when they could have easily been the one to help me out. The fact that NOBODY said anything about my car pretty much tells me that they all had their noses in the air. A simple "hope everything's okay" or "is there anything I can do, just let me know" or even posting something on the board about it would have been plenty enough for me. Being the type of person I am I would have more than likely said "thanks for the offer... but I'm pretty sure I've got things covered... but I appreciate your offer of help."

I'll tell you what, as the guy who started the fund, I'll make an exception for you. Send the money to your buddies fund instead. You seem to be the type that would feel you were "owed" something anyway, and that AIN'T what it is about! If you don't get that perhaps a SERVICEMAN that spent his savings to build the motor MIGHT not be able to recover from a motor blowup in less than 1000 miles as quickly as you and me, then you don't get it. Forget the money. You ain't been there, so you do what is right for you.

I've got nothing but respect for our servicemen defending our country... my girlfriend's best friend from high school is a Marine Sniper and I CONSTANTLY tell her when they talk to tell him to be safe and thanks for the job he does keeping us safe. I don't feel like any one owes me anything... more like I owe it to others and myself. It seems to me the shop should be liable for fixing his engine since I'm sure it was their screwup to begin with. If my motor blew then I'd be sunk for sure... but then again it's not my daily driver. That's what I said about making sure the shop is reputable and will stand behind their work. If you can't find someone like that then you find someone who knows about modifying stuff like this and with their help you do it yourself. I've never been a big fan of paying someone to do it anyway... costs way more in the end and takes the fun out of modifying your own car.

[/B]Good...go hang with the others with a 'tude. I'm sure they will be JUST as supportive whenever you need it. As for the members only section, I don't post there either, but that doesn't mean I judge those who do. I don't feel I have that RIGHT! You got a bad case of "I know it all, and I ain't afraid to tell anyone" bud. The problem with that is none of us seldom DO know it all, and I'll tell you up front you most certainly do not! 2 cents is about what it is worth.[/b] [/B][/QUOTE]

I'm afraid the "I know it all" statement should be redirected. You don't know me much more like I don't know you. You think you know all the specifics of what went on... and I'm sure you didn't have any problems meeting people when you did cause I'm sure you're probably older than I am. I'm all of 27 years old and the only people close to my age at the cruise-in were people that came with me. To quote a favorite movie of mine... it'd go something like this:

You'd say "you run your mouth kinda reckless for a man that don't go heeled."

And I'd say "no need to go heeled to get the buldge on a devil like you."

smashedheadcat
10-26-2002, 10:21 PM
Originally posted by NO 5 OH



And I feel for the guy who's car is broke right now... I'll probably send some money his way too. BUT he chose to modify it, and stuff happens as a result of modifications. If I blew the motor up in my 86 car then oh well... it's my fault, I'll fix it eventually. The reason you PAY big dollars to have the motor gone through is to be DONE PROPERLY. That means you go with a reputable shop or you do it yourself. Most people that have fast cars pay somebody else to do it anyways... don't have a CLUE how to properly tune one themselves.


MY .02

i'm a firm believer that you get what you put in, and people get what they deserve. nobody owes me anything. and i don't feel that they do. Just because i'm in the military, i don't expect special favors, and i don't believe any of us do. Marines take care of their own. they always have, and they always will. as far as modifying motors..... it's always been a dream of mine to have the car i do now. i was the kid that started detassling corn at the age of 13 so i could purchase a mustang when i got my liscense. as soon as i was old enough to work, i got a job. working for everything. i had/have goals that take a little money to reach. Sometimes things happen. And they can happen to anyone. If you trip and fall, you can always get up on your own, but it's a always nice to have someone help you back up. "Poor serviceman" with a broke car holds everyone in the club (and people who are not in) so high. out of the kindness of their hearts, they extended a helping hand. they weren't asked, they didn't feel obligated to do so, they just did. One great guy got the ball rolling, and everyone's helped, whether they posted or not. He extends his deepest thanks.

Ken 01-Cobra
10-27-2002, 01:19 AM
Originally posted by NO 5 OH
snip
However, I am truly saddened at my part in this, and have said all I plan to say on the subject. Please keep us informed on Robert's progress.

SilverStrike
10-27-2002, 02:39 PM
This thread has run it's course..