Big response from community expected today at benefit for BJ Aina

By Tom Rivers, Editor Posted 9 April 2022 at 10:00 am

Photo by Tom Rivers

CARLTON – About 140 baskets are ready in the Cartlon Rec Hall for a benefit today for BJ Aina and his family. Doors open at 1 p.m. and the raffle ends at 6 p.m.

Provided photo: BJ Aina and his wife Amy are shown with their sons, Hank and Hoyt.

The 500 tickets for a pulled pork dinner have already sold out but people are still welcome to try to win a basket or stay for the four bands that will be performing from 6 to 11 p.m. No one under 21 will be allowed inside after 6 p.m.

Aina, 42, suffered a cerebral hemorrhage on Feb. 9 from a medical condition called AVM (arteriovenous malformation). Aina was unaware he had the condition.

He is currently in a rehab facility run by Strong Memorial Hospital that gives speech, occupational and physical therapy.

He and his wife Amy have two sons, Hank and Hoyt. Mrs. Aina showed her husband a video of all the baskets in the raffle, and other items and food. He was stunned.

“All of this for me?” he told her.

Aina is part of a big family and he well connected locally as an enthusiastic hunter and outdoorsman. He works at Flower City Glass.

“He knows so many people,” said his brother, Tyler. “It’s amazing to see how everyone came together.”

BJ looks forward to coming home. He has been hospitalized or in the rehab unit for care for nearly 60 days.

“He is doing a lot better,” his brother said.

BJ’s wife said he is making progress. She said she appreciates the response from the community.