Free will offering supper and music fest set at Milan VFW
Community comes together to help young man seriously injured

Wanda English Burnett

Dylan’s well being is about all his mother, Barbara Hotko, has on her mind these days. She told The Versailles Republican she is grateful for people like Jean Stoddard, who is organizing a fundraiser to help the family after Dylan Eadens, 19, was involved in a horrific car crash December 13.

“Right now at his side is where I need to be,” Hotko told the newspaper as she prepared to make the trip she makes every single day to a Cincinnati hospital where her son is fighting for his life in a burn unit following a one-vehicle accident on Delaware Road that claimed both his legs and left him severely burned.
Dylan graduated from Jac-Cen-Del High School in 2008 and had recently graduated from Hobart Institute of Welding Technology in Troy, OH. His dreams of becoming a welder were closer than ever and soon he was employed at BAE Systems of Fairfield, OH.

Raised in the Osgood/Milan area, Dylan was home for the weekend when the tragic accident happened where his vehicle became an inferno that trapped him after he lost control on icy roads, according to Stoddard. Friends of Dylan describe him as “full of life”, “energetic”, “funny”, “witty”, “strong”, and “determined”. Now his will for life has been put to the test. He has already been through numerous medical procedures including the amputation of both of his legs.

Friend of Dylan and the family and coordinator of the upcoming fundraiser, Stoddard said the accident, “changed this young man’s life forever.” She is a registered nurse and was on duty the night Dylan was brought to the emergency room, one she will never forget.

Stoddard noted that Dylan is “an exceptional young man with a wonderful personality” who she thought the world of. He had worked for her when she lived on a farm near the Milan area.

“Jean was actually friends with Dylan before she and I became friends,” noted Dylan’s mother who is also a nurse. Now the women have more than ever in common - they are nurses, they love Dylan, and are now fighting for him to overcome hurdles most people cannot imagine.

There will be many fundraisers to help with the expenses for this young man, who would have had insurance in a short time, but since he was only begun his position he didn’t quite qualify, leaving him with no insurance.

Traveling to and from the hospital daily is a financial strain on the family that Stoddard hopes can be alleviated by the good will of a caring community. She and others have worked hard to organize a group called “Friends of Dylan” who have planned a night of music entitled “Giving Hearts”. This will be a free-will offering supper and multi-band music fest held February 6 from 4-10 p.m. at the Milan VFW Post #6234 (107 N. Warpath, Milan).

The event will feature Wildwood Valley Boys, a bluegrass band, Mills Run, country, and Broken Image, a rock group. Catering will be provided by Wayne’s Meats. There will be a raffle and silent auction. This is where many businesses and individuals are needed to donate items. You can contact Stoddard at 654-1614 or 513-967-1667.

If you are unable to come to the music fest but want to give, you can make a tax deductible donation to any Fifth Third Bank, c/o Friends of Dylan Eadens.

Stoddard noted the road to recovery is long for her young friend - who turned 20 New Years Eve while in the burn unit fighting for his life. While he faces many challenges ahead, she says the generous support from friends, neighbors, family and the entire community will help at this critical time in their lives.
While the family needs financial assistance to get through this tough time, they also need prayer. Dylan’s mother said she is appreciative of all the prayers she knows people have offered on behalf of her son.

Dylan Eadens