Kelly Hennessa, a Reston native and 1978 graduate of Herndon High School, is continuing to recover after a car accident in June left her in a coma for months.
Aiding in that recovery: her teen idol, David Cassidy.
Hennessa, who now lives in Prince William County, was severely injured when she and her son Carson were headed to get ice cream there on June 1. Hennessa suffered a severe head injury and was hospitalized for months. Her son Carson, 12, suffered broken bones and other injuries.
Which brings us to David Cassidy. To help Kelly during her recovery, her husband, Greg Powell, would play his wife’s favorite David Cassidy songs for her.
Kelly especially liked the song “I Think I Love You,” and her husband says he would always see a small grin come to her face when the song played.
Earlier this week, she got to meet Cassidy prior to his performance at Alexandria’s The Birchmere. See the full story in this clip from Fox5.
Friends are still offering lots of support for the Hennessa, who is on leave from her job as a special education teacher at Centreville High School.
More than $45,000 has been raised on a Go Fund Me page started by a family friend to help the family with its growing medical expenses. Hennessa requires 24-hour care at home and struggles with cognitive impairment and speech difficulties, according to a message on the Go Fund Me Page.
The family may also have to modify its house for accessibility modifications, and is still paying the surgeons, ambulance, medical helicopter and hospital bills from the initial car crash.
Kelly Hennessa and son Clayton/Go Fund Me
Hennessa, a 1978 Herndon High School graduate who now lives in Prince William County, was involved in a bad car accident when she was headed to get ice cream with her son on June 1.
Hennessa suffered a severe head injury and remains in a coma at Inova Fairfax Hospital.
Her son Carson, 12, suffered broken bones and other injuries and was transferred to a rehabilitation hospital on Wednesday, according to a Go Fund Me page set up by a friend of the family.
There has been an outpouring of support online for Hennessa, a special education teacher at Centreville High School; Carson, who suffers from cerebral palsy; older son Clayton; and husband Greg Powell, a local playwright.
“Kelly is one of the sweetest , loveliest and most loving people I have ever known,” says Herndon resident Trish Smith, who recently moved from Reston. “I met her 17 years ago, upon moving here from Manhattan to a place I knew nothing about. Kelly was one of my first Reston friends. Because of her spirit and laughter and fun outlook on everything in life, I grew to love Reston, too.”
Smith says Hennessa has “a ton of friends, who are positively bereft, brokenhearted, and praying nonstop for a miracle.”
The Go Fund Me Page was started by Chip Cherry, a friend of the family. As of Wednesday it had raised more than $36,000. There is a second page, also started by Cherry, to help with ongoing expenses the family will have. Cherry says he will close the first fundraising page soon.
“The road to recovery is long,” he wrote. “This second wave of fundraising is being set up with that in mind. This campaign is also being set up properly in American currency and will be connected directly to Greg so I as the administrator won’t need to act as a money mover. ”
There is an Open Mic fundraiser for the Powells Thursday night at Malone’s of Manassass. Effee’s Frozen Favorites in New Baltimore, VA, where Kelly and Carson were headed on June 1, is also holding a fundraiser on June 18. All proceeds will go to the Powell family.
To learn more about the Powell family, see this NBC4 story.
Photo: Kelly Hennessa and son Carson Powell/Credit: Facebook