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Victim To Make 1st Public Appearance & Learn of $20,000 Dental Donation
There’s little to smile about last Sunday’s “gay bashing” of Martin Sanchez in Long Beach, but tomorrow night’s fundraiser might just do the trick. Alegria, a local Latin restaurant, will host a fundraiser tomorrow evening, August 5, from 6 p.m. – 9 p.m., where the public may show their support and a prominent cosmetic surgeon will announce that he will donate his services (an estimated $20,000) to repair the significant damage caused by the violent attack.

Approximately 300 guests are expected to attend the fundraiser, where, for the first time since the attack, Sanchez will make his public debut. He will speak out about the attack and give an impassioned plea to stop violence against the gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender community. His best friend, Eric Avila, who was also present during the attack, will issue a plea against ignorance and encourage compassion and acceptance of those from all walks of life.

Alegria will serve complimentary appetizers during the 3-hour event and encourage donations from guests. All bar proceeds will be donated to Sanchez for ancillary costs related to the incident.

The beating occurred along Long Beach’s “LGBT friendly” Broadway corridor on Sunday. As a result of the brutal attack, Sanchez sustained significant injuries, including having one tooth knocked out and 5 others cracked. The highlight of the evening will be a surprise announcement at approximately 7:30 p.m. by Michael Fulbright, DDS, a cosmetic dentist and founder of Aesthetic Edge in Redondo Beach, who with his wife, Molly, will share the news that he will donate his services to give Martin his smile back. Fulbright was recently featured in The Advocate, a leading gay publication, for donating his services for another gay victim of violence.

“We have to come together as a community — gay, straight and otherwise — to stop the violence against those who whose race, religion, and, in this case, sexual orientation, makes them a target,” said Fulbright.

Alegria is located in downtown Long Beach at 115 Pine Ave., Long Beach, CA 90802. They can be reached at 562-436-3388.

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