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RUMSON, NJ - When the spinal cord injury to Eric LeGrand in the final minutes of the Rutgers Army game resulted in the Rutgers defensive end being paralyzed from the neck down, brothers Chris and James Smith began to plan a fundraiser at their Vals Tavern in Rumson to benefit the Eric LeGrand “Believe Fund.” Support for the upcoming event has been overwhelming as Rutgers alumni and friends have pitched in to lend a hand for the benefit scheduled for Thursday, December 2, from 7:00pm to midnight. Rutgers University Athletic Department and Alumni Association will be providing prizes for the raffle including a signed Rutgers football helmet with drawings throughout the night.

Brothers Chris and James Smith gather their Rutgers memorabilia and donation jars which they hope will be full on the Eric LeGrand “Believe Fund” benefit to be held at their Vals Tavern Restaurant of Rumson on December 2.

Local businesses such as Delicious Orchards and Athletes’ Alley are also contributing gifts for the raffle.  Point Pleasant Distributors has purchased 250 “Believe” T shirts which will be on sale with all monies going directly to the fund.  A portion of all bar and restaurant proceeds along with 100% of the raffle earnings will also be donated to the “Believe Fund.”  The restaurant will feature a special Scarlet Knights dinner menu and appetizer and drink specials will be available all night at the bar. Former Rutgers players will be in attendance.

Eric LeGrand

The owners of Val’s, who were both college football standouts, also coach local Pop Warner teams. They are looking forward to hosting this event and providing a venue for people to gather and support Eric and the “Believe Fund.”

Donations can be mailed directly to

“Eric LeGrand Believe Fund”
PNC Wealth Management
Attn: Kimberly G. Kingsland, Senior Trust Advisor
One Palmer Square Suite 201
Princeton, NJ 08542

What: Fundraiser to benefit the Eric LeGrand “Believe Fund”

Where: Val’s Tavern of Rumson

When: Thursday, December 2, 2010, 7:00pm –midnight

Why: Benefit paralyzed Rutgers football player, Eric LeGrand