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Texas A&M grad students given over $51K via online crowdfunding site after wreck

posted Dec 11, 2014, 1:38 AM by J Shaw   [ updated Jan 15, 2015, 11:03 PM by David Khorram ]
Five Texas A&M engineering graduate students from India who were injured in a car accident during Thanksgiving weekend have received an outpouring of financial support from an online fundraiser that has quickly almost reached its $50,000 goal.

Pranan Kannan, Akshay Jain, Chiranjibi Boere, Shachit Iyer and Kishan Bajaj were returning from a weekend trip to New Orleans when a pickup crossed the center line of a two-lane road on F.M. 105 West of Cleveland in Montgomery County and hit the sedan carrying the five men head-on. The YouCaring page, which is hosting the online fundraising drive, shows that it has raised $51,692 toward its

$50,000 goal in just three days as of Tuesday night. The funds will cover medical costs or travel expenses to get the students’ families in India to the U.S.

According to updates from the page, $20,000 was raised in under 24 hours after the fundraiser started one week after the collision.

The wreck did not result in any fatalities, but driver Kannan and passenger Jain were life-flighted to Kingdwood Medical Center and Houston Memorial Hermann Hospital respectively.

Katy Mears, assistant director of Texas A&M International Student Services, said it has been a team effort that has gotten help from outside the Aggie family.

“There have been truly amazing efforts that have been done through ISS and chemical engineering,” Mears said. “There’s been an outpouring of support from a variety of students. It’s not just an Aggie initiative.”

The creator of the page, Texas A&M student Kavita Sinha, did not respond to messages Tuesday, but an update on the page under her name Monday read, “I am so amazed by everyone’s generosity! I can’t believe that we have raised over $18,000 in LESS THAN 24 hours! Thank you to everyone and I know the families and students greatly appreciate it!”

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