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Minneapolis brewery hosts fundraiser for two bartenders who narrowly survived deadly car crash

Wednesday, Indeed Brewing Company and Taproom is donating profits to two part-time "beertenders" who are now recovering from a crash that killed their friend.

MINNEAPOLIS — Indeed Brewing Company and Taproom is donating a day of profits to support two part-time bartenders, called "beertenders", who are on the road to recovery after surviving a head-on collision that killed their friend.

Jacob Charles Eidem and Benja Wuest, along with Wuest's brother, Sam, and friend Brandon Wharton, were traveling to a cabin Dec. 27 to fulfill a holiday tradition. On the drive there, a minivan driving in the opposite direction crossed over the line and crashed into their car head-on. According to the Hennepin County Medical Examiner, Wharton, who was driving, was killed by the driver of the other vehicle.

Not only are Eidem and Benja Wuest grieving the death of one of their friends, they're faced with medical bills from an out-of-network hospital visit and surgery.

"The person that hit us wasn't insured on their vehicle, so it complicates things," said Eidem. "We don't have any income coming in right now, so I kind of feel like I'm throwing darts at a board with my eyes closed."

Eidem said they haven't had time to process the tragedy. Further complicating things, a lot of care that Wuest and him are receiving is out of network because their doctors advised them to continue care with the hospital they initially were taken to directly after the wreck, which was out of network.

"It's just going through the bureaucracy of switching insurance...so we can get that covered. So we're kind of in the dark...it's just kind of waiting for the system to come through."

Eidem's and Wuest, who are both local artists, also work part-time at Indeed Brewing Company and Taproom. Every Wednesday, the brewery selects a "worthy cause" to benefit through its "Indeed We Can" program. On Jan. 26, profits will support a cause very close-to-home: medical expenses of Eidem and Wuest. 

"I came to find out how bad and tragic of an occurrence this was," said Tom Whisenand, the co-founder and CEO. "But it didn't take long for everyone in Indeed to start talking about what we could do and how we could hopefully just pitch in and help out."

Additionally, both Wuest and Eidem have fundraising sites where people can donate.

To support Benja Wuest: GoFundMe for Benja Wuest

To support Jacob Charles Eidem: Fundly for Jacob Charles Eidem

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