After Assault, Friends Rally to Help General Enthusiast Pat Walsh
On June 22, D.C. resident and self-proclaimed "general enthusiast" Pat Walsh was walking back to his house in Mount Pleasant. It was about 1 a.m., and Walsh had been out late celebrating his birthday with a friend. Just as he was about to reach his house at 19th and Monroe streets NW, "some dudes ran up from behind me as I was almost home," Walsh writes in an email. "They punched me from behind, knocked me over, kicked me, and then ran away." He got up and called 911.
Walsh wound up with broken teeth, a messed up chin, and no information about his attackers. He received eight stitches and extensive dental work—he now wears temporary fake teeth while he awaits implants—and got hit with an enormous bill. "My dental costs are gonna be over $10,000," he writes. He says he's paid about $2,000 so far. Walsh has insurance, but he says it doesn't cover the total bill.
Fortunately, Walsh is a man with a lot of friends. When Brandon Wetherbee heard about Walsh's predicament at a party, the talk-show host and Brightest Young Things managing editor rallied his friends Chris Kelly and Emma Kelly and wife Kelsey Snell to help out. Now, the group is putting together a series of Pat Walsh benefits that they're calling "GrillFest." (You know, 'cause Walsh needs to pay for his new grill.)
On Friday, Wetherbee will dedicate his You, Me, Them, Everybody talk show to his pal, taking donations at the door. Sunday afternoon, Wetherbee will arrange a benefit brunch for Walsh, who's known for his own brunches (I've eaten Walsh's cooking before—it was tasty), at the Dunes. Then on Sunday night, U Street Music Hall hosts a dance-party fundraiser with some of Walsh's favorite local electronic acts and DJs: Protect-U, the dudes from the late Nouveau Riche dance night, Outputmessage, and Micah Vellian.
Wetherbee says Walsh downplayed the assault when he first inquired about it, and when I asked for details, Walsh seemed hesitant to speak at length about what happened. But he admits the whole thing was "pretty frustrating," since without any information about his attackers, he "just had to deal with it." At least now he won't have to deal with it alone.
Photo by Darrow Montgomery