Napa Boy, 15, Critically Injured In Snowboarding Crash: Family

February 28, 2024 0 By JohnValbyNation

NAPA VALLEY, CA — A 15-year-old Napa boy was severely injured over the weekend in a snowboarding accident and his aunt is raising funds as he embarks on a long healing journey.

Vintage High School student-athlete Blake Mendenhall was injured Sunday and is hospitalized in Reno, Nevada, according to his aunt Lacey Cannelos, who launched a GoFundMe campaign on behalf of Blake’s mother Tasha Abri and his stepfather Aaron Warnock; and Blake’s father Adam Mendenhall and stepmother Sharelle Mendenhall.

“… At this time, we know his spinal cord was severed and he cannot move or feel his legs,” Cannelos wrote. “Everything else appears to be intact. He underwent multiple hours of neurosurgery and has rods holding his spine together.”

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Blake is an “amazing, energetic, social 15-year-old and an extremely talented athlete; as you can imagine, this is a life-changing moment and we want to make sure this devastating accident is turned into an overwhelming gathering of HELP and HOPE,” Cannelos wrote.

“We would like to raise funds for not only the medical costs that will be incurred in the coming months but also funds for the things he and his family will need long term: rehabilitation, equipment, therapy and home modifications, to make the home functional for him during his recovery.”

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By Tuesday afternoon, nearly $75,000 in donations had already been made to the Blessings For Blake Mendenhall GoFundMe campaign. The goal was set at $275,000.

Cannelos said they would be especially grateful to anyone who can contribute their time as a volunteer contractor to help make the home modifications the family is most likely to need when Blake comes home. Those wishing to donate their construction skills or time in this way are asked to email their contact info to Zoe Warnock at

Instead of flowers or food, the family needs prayers and positive thoughts, she said.

“Please help us support this wonderful amazing family and their incredible, brave son Blake.”

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