Nick Adrian, Staff Writer
On October 6, JSU’s Alpha Omicron Pi and Pi Kappa Phi teamed together to host “Buckets 4 Brit,” a 3v3 basketball tournament that raised money for student Brittany Street’s medical expenses.
Street was involved in a jet ski accident on August 2 during a family vacation in Gulf Shores, Ala. She was rushed immediately to a local hospital before being med-flighted to Sacred Heart Hospital in Pensacola, Fla. Street had suffered two collapsed lungs and a broken rib and required staples in her head.
Once she was sent home, things only seemed to take a turn for the worse. Doctors found fluid in her lungs as well as results of two mini strokes that she had suffered during her stay at the hospital. She was returned yet again to the hospital, receiving lymphatic duct surgery and was tests to determine the extent of the damage from the strokes.
Street’s full recovery is expected to take a minimum of six months, in and out of physical and occupational therapy. Because of this, Street has taken the current semester off from school. With the added costs of surgeries, therapy sessions, doctors’ appointments and other hospital bills, her medical expenses were far from paid.
Luckily, Street’s boyfriend, Austin Pankey, had an idea. Pankey had experienced the multiple surgeries and hospital visits firsthand, and he wanted to help out in any way he could. He talked to the Pi Kappa Phi philanthropy chairman, DJ Metz, and came up with the idea of hosting a basketball tournament with help from Street’s sorority, Alpha Omicron Pi. His intention was to have a meaningful event rather than something that was merely thrown together at the last minute.
“DJ took the idea and went above and beyond my expectations with planning the event, booking the community center, and all the added things that come with that,” said Pankey.
Fellow students and friends Claire Davis and Taylor West helped create flyers, collect donations and contact sponsors. Soon, the entire campus was aware of the event. Donations and sponsorships started to flood in.
“Buckets 4 Brit” took place from 4:30 – 10:00 p.m. on October 6 at the Jacksonville Community Center. Street was able to attend and got the chance to see her supportive friends for the first time since her accident. Concessions were sold and the admission fee was $2, with one-hundred percent of the proceeds going towards Street’s family.
During the 3v3 tournament, thirteen different teams participated. The grand total of money raised was an incredible $1,600, all donated to the Street family. Though Brittany still has a ways to go for her recovery, the amount of love and support from her friends and fellow students on campus is surely getting her through it all.