Paralyzed teen fundraises for new van

Hugo Rubirosa hopes to drive on his own

Paralyzed teen fundraises for new van

JACKSONVILLE, ONSLOW COUNTY - A paralyzed teen is raising money to buy a new car in order to drive around easier.

NewsChannel12 is following up on Hugo Rubirosa, the Jacksonville High School graduate who became paralyzed from the waist down after a wrestling accident.

Saturday, Hugo held a fundraiser, at National Dodge-Chrysler in Jacksonville, to raise money for new van. The van his mom currently drives has no air conditioning. She said the heat led to Hugo having a heat stroke, and missing his high school graduation ceremony.

Hugo said the van is his biggest complaint.

"Everything is going to be so much better. This is the only headache I've had for a long time.  Everything else I deal with every day. I mean this is just a huge burden that will be lifted," Hugo said.

His mother Maria Rodriguez said they looked at several dealerships for the new van.

"After the day of his heat stroke, I said I don't know what you are going to do Hugo, but we need a new van," Rodriguez said.

His mom said they had some money saved for the new van, but they're still $7000.00 short. They hope to raise the rest of the money through fundraising at Dodge-Chrysler in Jacksonville.

"I didn't expect any dealership to put in this much effort for me this is amazing," Hugo said.

Hugo said with funding from the Cap Program he hopes to add modifications to the new van.

"They are going to put levers that go all the way down to the breaks, and the gas. With my hands I'll be able to drive the car," Hugo said.

General Manager for Dodge-Chrysler in Jacksonville, Robbie Yates, said they were just helping out someone in the community in need.

Hugo said they raised $908.00 during the fundraiser. He said he is going to continue fundraising until he has enough to take his new van off the lot.

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