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Friends of Michael Patterson, the fund set up to help the 43-year-old Rockmart, Ga., resident who was critically injured Saturday as he saved the life of a 4-year-old girl at the Rockmart Dam has passed the $50,000 mark just days after being established. The fund’s goal is to bring in $250,000 in donations.

Previous reports indicate that Patterson broke his neck in three places and severed his spinal cord after he dove into the dam near the Silver Comet trail to save Javeh Jones, who had been swept underwater by the current.

“In the water, all I saw was the top of her head, and I was just yelling, ‘Grab her. Somebody grab her,'” said Carlisa Jones, Javeh’s mother.

Jones said that Patterson didn’t hesitate to dive in and help save the girl. Authorities are calling him a hero and Carlisa Jones said that he’s more than that.

“He’s a God-send, basically,” said Jones. “He was there. He was supposed to have been there.”

Patterson’s friends and family say that he was visiting the creek with his son when he heard the cry of a mother as she noticed her daughter was in trouble. Javaeh was playing in the water when she waded into an area over her head and was swept away by the swift current of the creek.

Patterson dove in and rescued the child, but after his injury was reportedly floating face down in the water and unconscious for approximately three minutes before anyone realized what had happened.

He was eventually pulled from the water and was not breathing when emergency personnel arrived. Upon arrival, EMT’s performed CPR on Michael and then transported him to Redmond Regional Medical Center. He is currently at Emory Medical Center and his family hopes to get him into the Shepherd Center in Atlanta for rehabilitation. They told Atlanta’s Fox affiliate that their funds are limited because Patterson’s father has cancer and his grandfather is bedridden.

“Michael had just started a job two weeks prior to the incident, and he does not have insurance,” says a statement on the Friends of Mike Patterson Trust, the online fund created for the man who is now reportedly paralyzed from the waist down. “We are trying to help his family raise money for this hero.”

For more information and updates, please visit the official Facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/Friendsofmikepatterson

To contact the family, email: FriendsOfMikePatterson@gmail.com

Donations can be made to:

River City Bank
“Mike Patterson Donation Fund”
228 N. 2nd Ave SW
Rome, GA 30165

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