Community Rallies for Injured Girl

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JENKINS TOWNSHIP -- Dancing, games, and food were all part of a fundraiser to help 7-year-old Peyton Rusyn.

On May 14th, Rusyn was in a crash in Luzerne County while heading to dance class. The car she was in collided with a UGI vehicle on South Main street in Pittston. She`s been in the hospital ever since.

"We heard the sirens and that moment I knew she was going to get through this because she's too strong," said Cassie Cerulli, Peyton's dance teacher.

People from the Pittston area gathered at the Jenkins Township firehouse for a fundraiser for the Rusyn family. Organizers asked for a $20 donation.

"Our purpose is:  A. To provide support for Peyton and her family and,  B. To raise some much needed funds because this is causing a hardship on many levels for Peyton and her entire family," said Colleen Kutchkus, Peyton's former teacher and organizer of the event.

Besides that $20 donation, there is also a raffle, a 50/50 and a Chinese auction. All of the money will go to Peyton and her family.

As part of the fundraiser, Peyton's cousin dedicated a dance to the 7-year-old.

"Because it's really fun and Peyton and I like to do it a lot," said Ashlyn Loyack, Peyton's cousin.

People who know Peyton said she would love to be at the fundraiser celebrating with all her friends.

"She would say 'Where is my invitation?" because she's full of life and she is probably so happy that everyone is here for her," said her dance teacher.

"She's just a firecracker. She's a dancer, a softball player, a bowler, an all-around great child that I've never seen without her smile," said Kutchkus.

Her family hopes this fundraiser gives the little girl the will she needs to get better.

Anyone who couldn't make it to the fundraiser, but still wants to donate can write a check to "Team Peyton" and bring it to any M&T Bank.