A freak accident.
That’s what Eric Frazier’s family says led to the Fairview Heights man being shot in the face at a meat shoot in April.
Recovery has been slow for Frazier, 45, but he’s making progress. He was released from the hospital Saturday and has been home since then. His family is just grateful he’s alive.
“We’re making the best of it, day by day,” said Donna Frazier, Eric’s wife. “We’re all very thankful he’s still here and made it this far. He can watch his grandkids, smile at them, talk to them and hold them on his lap. That’s what makes it worth fighting for.”
Eric Frazier was shot at a meat shoot at the Caseyville Moose Lodge in April. He was the spotter, at the back of the range, watching for the shooter to fire. Normally, the eye hole the spotter looks out of is covered with bulletproof glass, said Tom Waters, Eric Frazier’s brother-in-law. This time it wasn’t.
The man shooting had never shot at the lodge before and mistook the plastic over the eye hole for the target as the sun glinted off it. He shot Eric Frazier right in the eye.
“It was a freak accident, just a freak accident,” Waters said.
Eric Frazier’s family is hosting a benefit for him to raise money for his medical bills. The benefit will be at the Caseyville Moose Lodge from 4 p.m. to midnight June 3.
Eric Frazier lost his left eye and has little to no ability to move the right side of his body after the bullet went through his brain. He’ll have to get fitted for a prosthetic eye, and he still doesn’t have the bones back on the left side of his skull. Doctors need to wait for the swelling to go down first, so he’ll have another surgery in a few months to repair that.
He spent more than a month at Mercy Rehab Center trying to regain his mobility. He was released back home Saturday, only able to walk with the assistance of a quad cane and a brace on his ankle.
Eric Frazier needs assistance with everything now, Donna Frazier said, a big change for the man who used to do everything himself and never ask for help. He was a brick layer for 25 years, a volunteer at the Caseyville Moose Lodge and a little league football coach for 10 years.
Donna Frazier hasn’t been able to work since her husband was shot — she’s spent every day with him, at the hospital or rehab center. She went through therapy with him each day, knowing she would be his primary caregiver at home.
The Frazier family is hosting a benefit to raise money for Eric Frazier’s medical bills.
“We want to raise money to help them pay (the bills), to help them take care of things,” Waters said. “They have to be able to live ... without him bringing home his paycheck, they pretty much have nothing.”
The benefit is from 4 p.m. to midnight June 3 at Caseyville Moose Lodge. It’s open to anyone who wants to come, and there will be live music, a silent auction and a raffle. Quarter Draw Band and 20th Street Garage Band are the two groups playing at the benefit. Quarter Draw Band guitar and vocalist Marty Richter, of Collinsville, has played at a few benefits before. Although he doesn’t know the Fraziers personally, he said he wants to do anything he can to help.
“If we can help people out with something like this, we’re happy to do it,” Richter said. “Hopefully it’ll do some good for the family.”