LINCOLN, Maine — Roy Crockett lives a good distance away from Chloe Creehan and has never met her, but when he heard of the 3-year-old girl’s plight, he knew he had to help, he said Tuesday.
“It’s just what I want to do,” said Crockett, a 38-year-old Wal-Mart truck driver. “Her story is such a heart-wrencher. When I read it, it was like, man, what can I do to help this little girl. It is awful for a child that young to be that sick.”
The East Millinocket girl suffers from epidermolytic hyperkeratosis, a rare skin disorder also known as ichthyosis. The genetic disorder causes scaly skin eruptions, bony prominences and easy blistering on parts of the body. As few as one person out of 300,000 suffers from it, according to emedicine.com.
Crockett of Dover-Foxcoft will be at the WalMart on West Broadway from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. Saturday holding a cookout for Chloe and her mother, Melissa, to raise money to help make their lives more comfortable.
Crockett and other WalMart truck drivers and workers will be selling hot dogs, hamburgers and other items donated by WalMart and Sam’s Club stores in Bangor, Brewer, Houlton and Lincoln, he said.
They also want to hold a raffle that will benefit the Creehans, he said. WalMart is not sponsoring the event, but is donating its facilities and trucks. Anyone interested in donating raffle items or buying a ticket can e-mail Sandra J. Crockett, Roy’s wife, at email@example.com.
Crockett’s effort is one of a series of events to help Melissa Creehan, a certified nurse’s assistant, who needs special equipment and must bathe her daughter several times a day to treat the fragile skin that is at the heart of her daughter’s disorder.
Kelly Willigar, an East Millinocket woman who has organized several benefits for the Creehans, said she would be there on Saturday.
“I think it’s wonderful what they are doing,” Willigar said Tuesday.
The Creehan family is selling window decals and ribbons and will split the proceeds between Chloe and the Foundation for Ichthyosis and Related Skin Types Inc., or FIRST, all to raise ichthyosis awareness, they have said.
A 50-50 raffle held at the East Millinocket Federal Credit Union on Oct. 10 raised $662 for the Creehans because the winner, Ron Levasseur of East Millinocket, gave his winning ticket, which paid $331, to Chloe, Willigar said.
Residents already have donated a twin-size bed set complete with sheets, several bags full of secondhand and new clothes, a portable TV stand, a love seat, whirlpool, two humidifiers, a new air conditioner, dozens of new towels and washcloths, and a small bag of toys, among other items, to Chloe.
Melissa Creehan has expressed deep gratitude for the generosity. She did not immediately return a telephone message seeking comment Tuesday.
For more information on Chloe or the Creehans, visit chloecreehan.homestead.com.