A Lasting Legacy for Todd Johnson: Local Family Starts Fundraiser for Eagle Valley Behavioral Health
Fundraiser in Todd’s Honor to Benefit Eagle Valley Behavioral Health
Charismatic, compassionate, giving, selfless, adventurous, and funny were just some of the adjectives used to describe Todd Johnson at his recent celebration of life.
On Oct. 31, 2021, Johnson died at his home in EagleVail due to health complications from his struggles with alcoholism for many years. In the wake of his death, Kelley Smith and her husband, Jim Smith, the stepfather to Johnson, have started a fundraiser in his honor to benefit Eagle Valley Behavioral Health.
“I do believe in behavioral health, I think it’s really important, and this was just a way to do it for Todd and create a bright spot in this whole tragedy,” Kelley Smith said.
Moreover, as of Wednesday, Dec. 21, the fundraiser has received nearly 100 donations totaling just over $19,401, which will go toward Eagle Valley Behavioral Health’s efforts to build and support a multi-faceted approach to addiction and substance abuse.
The impacts of this fundraiser extend far beyond the money raised — and even what those funds will ultimately support — according to Dan Pennington, president of the Vail Health Foundation.
Sharing a Message to Help Others
“Sure, the money is important because it allows us to do the work, but I think being vulnerable, sharing a message and getting people aware of what happened to someone in our community, and learning about opportunities to maybe step in and help others who are maybe suffering from the same thing is probably a greater impact than even the money that would help support some of the services and things that are being done,” Pennington said.
In addition, the resources and support available for those struggling with behavioral health as well as alcohol and substance abuse also extend beyond Vail Health and its subsidiaries. This includes many of its community partnerships like SpeakUp ReachOut, Your Hope Center, Eagle County Paramedics Services, Vail Mental Wellness, as well as Alcoholics Anonymous and Al-Anon.