WAKEFIELD, Neb. — Residents in this small northeast Nebraska community reached out to their namesake city in Massachusetts after the Boston Marathon bombings last week.
Dan Loofe of Wakefield was watching news coverage of the Boston Marathon bombings last week when he saw an interview with Liz Norden of Wakefield, Mass. Her two sons, JP and Paul, were spectators at the race, near the finish line, when the two bombs exploded. Each son lost a leg from the knee down.
Paul Norden's girlfriend, Jacqui Webb, suffered serious burns and injuries and was hospitalized.
“Being from Wakefield, Neb., and then learning they were from Wakefield, Mass., it just kind of rang a bell,” Loofe said.
That spurred him to act. His idea to raise money for the Nordens was passed on to Mayor Jim Clark and Val Bard, who is involved in the Wakefield Community Club, and they quickly jumped onboard.
The community followed their lead.
A Girl Scouts troop made get-well cards.
Wakefield students are holding a penny drive.
Collection jars are set up at local businesses. And churches are collecting funds, too.
“I just hope everyone will throw in something,” Loofe said. “Every dollar is going to help.”
The money is being deposited in a bank account at the Iowa-Nebraska State Bank in Wakefield. Ultimately it will be sent to the Nordens.
“They could've just as easily been from Wakefield, Neb.,” Loofe said. “It just seemed like the right thing to do.”