Musicians across country help Florida boy with cerebral palsy



As soon as you meet Brave Brown, you are greeted with a big, toothy smile. He is arguably one of the happiest 2-year-olds you will ever come in contact with.

“He’s like Elf,” Brave’s father, Dusty Brown, said, referencing the character from the movie starring Will Ferrell. “Elf says, ‘Smiling is my favorite.’ He’s always smiling. It’s his favorite."

Brave’s smile lights up a room. However, it’s his story that has touched the hearts of people across the country.

“He’s not able to sit up or walk or feed himself, or even hold a bottle,“ Brittany Brown, Brave’s mom, said.

Brave has cerebral palsy, epilepsy, cortical visual impairment and dystonia. His parents said their insurance covers $7,500 of his treatments each month. They said they pay about $14,000 out of pocket.

“Our insurance was astronomical,” Brittany Brown said. “His medication was not covered by insurance, so it’s $868 a month.”

“It’s difficult for us to ask for help,' Dusty Brown said. "We don’t want to ask for help.”

But after Dusty’s brother tried to sell his drum set to help with the family’s medical bills, word spread about Brave. People in the music industry wanted to help.

“When I heard about that in our community, I got extremely inspired and just decided that I wanted to do more,” David Lage said. He makes drums in Washington, D.C. Although he has never met the Brown family, he wanted to do something to help them. “It was just going to be some close friends pulling together some resources making, like, a monetary donation very quietly. We didn’t have that because we’re all drum-makers, but what we did have is music gear.”

So, he created the Brave Project, where musicians auction off their instruments to raise money for Brave's medical bills. Between GoFundMe donations and drum sets being auctioned off, the project has raised more than $17,000.

"I don't know if I spent all day talking to you or talking to him if I could accurately portray just how grateful we really are," Dusty Brown told WJAX.

“I appreciate the gratitude, but I’m extremely thankful for being able to help,” Lage responded.

The hope is that Brave can be taken care of for a long time. Through this ripple effect of kindness, complete strangers have become lifelong friends.

“He said, ‘You’re not gonna get rid of me just yet,’” Dusty Brown said. “I told him, ‘I don’t think you’re ever going to get rid of us!'"

If you're interested in supporting the Brave Project or want to find out about the next series of options, click here.

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