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Girl critically hurt in ATV crash near Detroit Lakes still hospitalized in Minneapolis

MINNEAPOLIS—One of three girls badly hurt in an ATV crash on the Fourth of July northeast of Detroit Lakes is undergoing a round of extensive surgeries here, and a fundraising campaign is underway to help her family pay for it.

Four-year-old Bethany Bakke, along with her twin sister, Adelyn, were passengers on an ATV driven by Kylee Jo West, 8, near Cotton Lake, about 13 miles northeast of Detroit Lakes.

The girls, all from Ulen, were seriously hurt when the ATV West was driving was struck by a vehicle on County Highway 32 about a mile south of the intersection with County Highway 27.

Bethany Bakke is now at Gillette Children's Hospital in Minneapolis being treated for her critical injuries and undergoing multiple surgeries, said a GoFundMe page set up by family friend Sarah Okeson. Bethany was flown to Sanford Children's Hospital before being transferred to Minneapolis.

Her sister, Adelyn Bakke, has since been released from a hospital and is recuperating at home, Okeson said.

West, the driver of the ATV, was flown to Sanford Medical Center in Fargo, where she underwent surgery for a broken femur and was still in the hospital Thursday, though she had recovered enough to get from her hospital bed to a wheelchair, Okeson said.

Bethany's parents, Blaine and Rachel Bakke, of Ulen, are staying at the Ronald McDonald House near the Minneapolis hospital, helping their daughter in her recovery.

Okeson said on the fundraising page that Bethany Bakke had surgery on July 4 for five hours. She broke her jaw, injured her vertebrae and spine, broke her left leg and had multiple breaks in her left foot, Okeson said.

Operations would be done on her foot and leg Friday, and her spine on Monday.

The GoFundMe page has a goal of raising $15,000 to help with medical costs, and had reached $12,000 by 5 p.m. Friday from nearly 130 donations.

To donate, go to www.gofundme.com/sunshinegirls

Rick Abbott

Rick Abbott, a native of Grand Forks, N.D., is a multimedia reporter at The Forum of Fargo-Moorhead. He graduated with a degree in Mass Communications with an emphasis in Photojournalism from Minnesota State University Moorhead. Rick previously worked at WDAZ-TV in Grand Forks as production director and later web producer.

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