Thousands Rally Around 5-Year-Old Girl Unconscious After Tragic Accident at Suburban Fest - NBC Chicago

Thousands Rally Around 5-Year-Old Girl Unconscious After Tragic Accident at Suburban Fest

Leah Dinchak has been unconscious for nearly two weeks

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    NEWSLETTERS

    Thousands Rally Around Girl Left Unconscious in Accident

    A tragic accident in a northern Chicago suburb has left the family of a 5-year-old girl wondering if she’ll ever fully recover. Chris Hush reports. (Published Thursday, Aug. 23, 2018)

    A tragic accident in a northern Chicago suburb has left the family of a 5-year-old girl wondering if she’ll ever fully recover.

    Leah Dinchak has been unconscious for nearly two weeks after she was hit by a minivan as her family crossed a street in Lindenhurst on their way to Lindenfest.

    “Every minute feels like an hour,” said the young girl’s father Blake Dinchak.

    Doctors said Leah suffered brain injuries in the accident.

    Family members worry the injuries will take away Leah’s vibrant personality, which she so adorably flaunted in the days before the crash.

    “You gotta be patient. You gotta be patient. So we’re just doing the best that we can to support her,” Dinchak said.

    But while the family takes their daughter’s condition minute by minute, an army of support has been building behind them.

    From vigils to restaurant fundraisers to #LeahStrong to a GoFundMe page that now tops $20,000, the suburban community and thousands of strangers from around the country have thrust their support behind a young girl with so much ahead of her.

    “It’s crazy. There’s churches and prayer groups,” said her mother Jenni Dinchak.

    Even people who have recovered from brain injuries have contacted the family to share their experiences and bring hope.

    “It kind of makes my heart squeeze when I see those words because I feel like something is coming,” Jenni Dinchak said.

    With every message, and every day that passes by, the family sees Leah’s eyes open wider.

    “I dream that eventually she’ll just say, ‘Hey daddy, what happened?’” Blake Dinchak said.

    The Lake County State’s Attorney’s office will ultimately determine if the driver of the minivan will face any charges.

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