MILTON - The holidays are supposed to be a special time of year built on foundations of family tradition and love, but for one local family, those foundations were shaken to their very core by a series of tragic events of inconceivable consequence.
On Thanksgiving Day, Laura and Keith Noseworthy held a festive family get-together at their Milton home.
"There were about 20 of us there," said Amy Corbin of Rochester, who is Laura Noseworthy's sister.
After an afternoon of fellowship and feasting, it was time to leave. Keith Noseworthy's mom and dad, Randy and Patricia, and his grandmother, Ruth, piled into a car to head back to Nottingham.
On the way the unthinkable occurred: a horrific crash on Route 4 in Northwood claimed the life of Patricia and severely injured the grandmother. Randy sustained injuries as well.
Unbelievably, tragedy would strike again a week before Christmas when Leila Terwilliger, the mother of Laura Noseworthy and Amy Corbin, would be killed in a crash when her car hit a snowdrift in the middle of the highway and struck a pickup truck head-on in Northern Maine.
The Noseworthys are now in the process of having to sell their Milton home to move to Nottingham to take care of their dad and grandmother.
Meanwhile, Laura Noseworthy has been an integral part of the fabric of Milton, serving on the School Board as well as School PTA and End 68 Hours of Hunger.
To support this family that has done so much to support the town, a benefit is being planned by Nute School Board member and family friend Melissa Brown and Tammy Crandall.
A "Better Times Benefit" will take place at Nute High School on Feb. 2 from 6-9 p.m. A band, The Sunday Sinners, is traveling up from Massachusetts to perform.
There will be a Before and After Theme, meaning free appetizers and desserts. The cost of the tickets is $10.
As an added assist for parents baby-sitting will be available on the second floor of Nute for children: that cost will be $5 per child and $2 per sibling and will include games and pizza.
There will also be numerous raffles from generous donations as part of the festivities.
"Being part of a small community means showing support for our neighbors," Brown said.
For babysitting signups or more info on how to help, please email Tammy Crandall at Tammy.Crandall06@gmail.com.