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Nearly $30K raised for paralyzed woman

More than 200 supporters gathered at Mozambique Steakhouse Monday for dancing, dinner and raising money to cover medical expenses for a San Clemente woman with Laguna Beach ties who was paralyzed in an all-terrain vehicle accident in February.

As of Thursday, donors contributed nearly $30,000 to help Chelsea Rush, a 24-year-old San Clemente resident. Rush's grandparents, John and Ramona "Lee" Hiers, played pivotal roles in developing the Art-A-Fair and Sawdust festivals in Laguna.

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Rush fractured her spinal cord in an ATV accident in Borrego Springs. She was paralyzed from the chest down without the use of her hands.

After several weeks in critical condition, Rush was transferred to Craig Hospital in Englewood, Colo., to begin a rehabilitation program.

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She remains in Colorado and is pregnant, in the third trimester.

Rush was a hairdresser at the International Hair Salon in Laguna and enjoyed jewelry making and painting in her free time. Salon owner Noreen Goodman organized Monday's fundraiser.

For updates on Rush, visit Chelsea of the Sea on Facebook. Donations can be made through helphopelive.org under the Chelsea Rush campaign.

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Bryce Alderton, bryce.alderton@latimes.com

Twitter: @AldertonBryce

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