‘Budd Strong’: Fundraiser held for woman hit by rock

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PERRY TWP., OH - Hundreds crowded into Edison Middle School on Tuesday, showing their support for the family of Sharon Budd and her family.

Budd continues to recover from critical head injuries after a rock thrown from an Interstate 80 overpass in Pennsylvania crashed through the windshield of her family's car as they were travelling to New York on July 10th.

Her daughter, Kaylee, was driving and told Fox 8 News that she never saw the rock coming.

"The rock was volleyball size. It was about 8 pounds," said Kaylee on Tuesday, adding "I didn't really know what happened until I looked over and my mom was slumped over."

Pennsylvania State Police Trooper Rick Blair confirms that four teenagers have been arrested and charged with the crime.

Three of them, Tyler Gregory Porter, 17 of Milton, and brothers Brett Lahr, 18 and Dylan Lahr, 17 of New Columbia face charges as adults that include aggravated assault and conspiracy, as well as misdemeanor charges of propulsion of missles into an occupied vehicle.

A fourth teenager has been charged as a juvenile.

At Edison Middle School on Tuesday, fellow teacher and close friend Leslie Foster said the teens would not have done anything to hurt Budd if they knew her.

"It's just a shame that they couldnt have been in her classroom with her and felt her love," said Foster.

Many of Budd's former students were also at the fundraiser, writing notes to Budd and her family.

"Mrs. Budd was a great teacher, her smile lit up a room," said Miranda Kochur

"I actually cried on the way to church on Sunday and thought of her and kind of felt bad for her," said Gavin Ellis, who described Budd as his favorite teacher.

Perry Local School District Superintendent Marty Bowe told Fox 8 News that he hopes to use the tradgedy as a learning experience for kids when they return for the new school year.

Bowe says he hopes to teach kids that decisions have consequences and it is important to be a good community citizen.

His office has been collecting contributions from former students, their families, teachers and others who do not even live in the district and who never met or knew Budd.

The contributions have not just been cash, but gift cards for meals.

"Their kindheartedness and compassion for Sharon Budd and her family has just been overwhelming," said Elaine Longo.

At Tuesday's fundraiser, fellow teachers were selling "Budd Strong" t-shirts and bracelets, as well as pies, cookies, cupcakes and other treats to help raise money for the Budd family.

Budd's son, Joey Budd, says the outpouring of love and support from Ohio and Pennsylvania have been inspiring through the difficult recovery.

He says his mother faces additional surgeries and a lengthy rehabilitation, but he is encouraged she will persevere.

"From all over the nation, we are getting support and just, talk about good people outweighing bad people. That's what's going to get us through this," said Budd​.

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