LJ Strong - Team Lopes - Help LJ Heal
The moment that everything changed. Click here to read about the tragedy that made national news and changed the Lopes Family forever.
This GoFundMe campaign was created on behalf of and with the consent of Olivia and Alex Lopes for their son, LJ. Olivia is a Physical Education teacher at William Annin Middle School and coaches both Girls Basketball and Girls Lacrosse at Ridge High School. Alex is the Offensive Coordinator of the Men’s Lacrosse Team at the New Jersey Institute of Technology. They are both incredibly dedicated to their students and athletes and are committed members of the Basking Ridge, Glen Ridge, Keyport and Kean University communities.
Everything changed on Tuesday, January 8th.
LJ was struck by a vehicle, along with his grandmother (59 years old) and cousin (4 years old). All three were walking home after picking LJ’s cousin up from preschool, when a vehicle jumped the curb and hit them from behind. LJ’s grandmother suffered two broken legs, a broken tailbone, and facial reconstructive surgery. His cousin suffered a broken femur, arm and jaw; both are now recovering in rehabilitation facilities. Tragically, LJ (only eight months old), was the most vulnerable and suffered the most extensive and life threatening injuries. His car seat was thrown from the stroller upon impact and recovered from nearby bushes with LJ still strapped into his car seat. He is currently fighting through multiple skull fractures, orbital fractures, severe brain trauma, and a broken leg and is currently having difficulty moving his right arm. LJ remains in the Pediatric Intensive Care Unit with extensive injuries and requires around the clock care and treatment. While Alex has had to return to work, Olivia has not left LJ’s side. The Lopes Family has a difficult road ahead and needs our support.
It is often in times like these that the best of communities are often revealed. Team Lopes needs your help! LJ has a long road ahead of him and may need to access expensive medical resources. Together we can show the Lopes Family that we have their back and we are here to support them through this difficult time. These funds will be used for medical and related expenses for LJ and family if and when they arise.
LJ was able to come home on April 8th with no feeding tubes and only on seizure medications. We still have a long road ahead of us in the healing process but he is kicking butt and getting better everyday. LJ learned how to crawl again and is pulling to stand. Thank you to everyone for the love and support throughout this time
Quick update: LJ is still at children’s specialized. It’s been a positive because LJ is receiving more therapy and making great progress day by day. LJ is still working hard on fixing a couple things, but we want you all to know we appreciate all of the love and support. Hopefully home early April.
LJ is still at children’s specialized and is doing much better since the shunt was put in. He is showing signs of his old personality and is smiling and laughing more, as well as starting to sit on his own. LJ will still be here for awhile longer but things are continuing to head in the right direction. We’re still so grateful for all of the love and support and can not wait to get our boy back home.
LJ has returned back to Children’s Specialized after his set back of his new condition, acquired hydrocephalus. Dr. Lawrence Daniels successfully placed LJ’s programmable VP shunt, which will help him drain the excess cerebral spinal fluid. At rehab he is continuing his usual therapies, he gets physical, occupational, recreational, and speech. LJ is a warrior and keeps fighting through everything that gets in his way.