Saturday's fundraiser for Cpl. Clayton McWilliams' medical expenses is receiving such overwhelming interest, organizers are moving it to a bigger venue—the Ashdown High School cafeteria.
McWilliams, an Arkansas State Police trooper, was en route to a call about 12:50 p.m. Jan 3 when his patrol unit apparently hydroplaned on U.S. Highway 71 near Wilton and hit a tree, according to reports.
Heavy rainfall in the area is believed to have contributed to the cause of the crash.
Since then, McWilliams has been hospitalized and undergoing several surgeries.
The chili dinner and auction to benefit the McWilliams family was originally planned for the Arden Community Building, located in the community where the family lives. Arden is near Ashdown.
However, organizers say interest and outpouring has been so strong, the event, slated for 5 p.m. Saturday, had to be moved to the larger venue at the Ashdown High School cafeteria, 751 Rankin St.
Agencies hosting the event are Arden Volunteer Fire Department, Little River County Sheriff's Department and Ashdown Police Department.
A fund has been established for McWilliams' family at Diamond Bank of Texarkana. Deposits can be made at any Diamond Bank branch.
The account is sponsored by Arkansas State Police Foundation Spouse's Auxiliary.
Questions regarding this account can be directed to Emily Hamilton at 870-292-9914 or Hilary Young at 903-244-3591.
Anyone who would like to donate items for the auction, can call Johnny Brown at 903-748-6846 or Justin Cooper at 903-824-0016.
An account for the family has also been established at Mil-Way Federal Credit Union in Ashdown.