KINGSTON, R.I. – April 21, 2008 — The University of Rhode Island will present a documentary film focusing on the critical need to support a former URI student and his family as he endures rehabilitation from injuries suffered in a fall from an escalator in March 2006.
Titled Where There Is A Will, the film will be shown Sunday, April 27 at 6 p.m. at the URI Memorial Union Ballroom, 50 Lower College Rd., Kingston. Admission is $10 for students and $20 for the general public. Donations will also be accepted. All proceeds benefit the Friends of Pat Fund. Refreshments will be served.
The BooseyHawkes Productions’ newest film chronicles the pain, hope and hardship experienced by the Killelea family of Middleton, Mass., whose lives were changed when former URI student Patrick Killelea, then 22, fell 30 feet from an escalator at Denver Airport. As a result, he suffered traumatic brain injury.
The screening will also feature addresses by speakers including Kori Feener, the film’s director, and Neil Leston, URI student body president.
“When Dean of Student Fran Cohen told me Pat’s story I knew I had to bring this film to URI,” Leston said. “We started organizing, and it is my hope that we can tell as many people as possible the story of Pat Killelea and the strength of his family. I never had the opportunity to meet Pat, and I don’t think that really matters. I am just glad I can do this for one of my fellow students.”
Killelea was a communications major and a talented member of the University’s soccer team his freshman year. Feener was a high school classmate of Killelea and also played high school soccer with his sister. Featuring interviews with family members, friends and medical professionals, Feener’s film illustrates how an accident of this magnitude affects everyone connected to it. Feener graduated from the University of Tampa in 2006 with a bachelor’s degree in film and media arts.
“As a filmmaker, I want to convey a message to viewers rather than simply entertain them,” Feener said. “When I heard that one of my former high school classmates had suffered a debilitating brain injury, I was compelled to tell his story to raise awareness about disabilities and our insurance system. When accidents like this happen there is a clear emotional cost, but the last thing a family should have to worry about is the financial cost.”
Since his accident, Killelea has gone through a long recovery process, struggling to walk and communicate again. The Killelea family is still struggling with many unresolved insurance issues.