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      Generous donation protects kids from head injuries

      Portage Health Hospital teamed up with Dr. Craig Coccia, a neurosurgeon from Marquette General Hospital, and they donated over 200 ski helmets to kids involved in Mont Ripley's after school program.

      Kids stood in line and anxiously waited to receive their new helmets. Mont Ripley says last year, 18 percent of their accidents were head injuries or possible concussions and of that 18 percent, only one person wore a helmet.

      Their goal is to lower the risk of injuries and encourage kids to wear helmets while out on the mountain.

      "Helmets are very important," said Mont Ripley General Manager Nick Sirdenis. "We're trying to educate kids on how important they are. We're trying to get the ski industry to be more compliant with helmets. Five or six years ago, you were lucky to see two percent of the people wearing helmets; now we're up to 30 or 40 percent."

      Once the kids got their heads measured, they were fitted with a brand new helmet and then it was time to hit the slopes.