Earlier this month, University of California, Merced student Katarina Baltazar was involved in a horrific car accident. For 12 weeks, Baltazar will be non-weightbaring and confined to a wheelchair after suffering countless injuries from head to toe.
At the time of her accident, Baltazar was rocking her "beloved" ScHoolboy Q hoodie. When she arrived at Community Regional Medical Center, Fresno's only level 1 trauma center, she was told paramedics would need to cut up her sweatshirt in order to safely remove it from her body. However, despite dealing with severe pain from her fractured ribs, Baltazar managed to slip off her most valued piece of clothing.
"At the time I didn't think of my concussion, shattered pelvis, fractured ankle, broken and dislocated toes, lacerated kidney and spleen, fractured ribs or my punctured right lung," she wrote in a post to Instagram. "No, I thought of @groovyq @topdawgent and how I was still finna rock this crippled or not."
As you can see in the above photo, although Baltazar's hoodie wasn't cut into two, as a result of a cut underneath her chin from broken glass, it did become bloodstained.
Enter ScHoolboy Q to save the day.
As a result of being tagged in her Instagram post, the TDE rapper saw the photo and responded by offering Baltazar "3 sweaters" and the "Girl Power" hoodie that Q sported at the GRAMMYs ceremony two weeks ago.
Six days after their initial back-and-forth, Q followed-up with Baltazar on Twitter, confirming he has some "stuff for her" and wishing her well. Last evening, Baltazar posted her response to Q on Instagram, writing that, despite "the pain, challenges, tears and everything else," it is Q's act of kindness that has elevated her spirits the highest.
Rap artists are often criticized when they openly acknowledge the responsibility that comes with their platform yet do nothing to back up their words, and rightfully so, but it's just as important that we highlight and champion those who rise to the occasion when nobody is looking or asking.
Just like Katarina Baltazar, ScHoolboy Q was once in a very bad place and required the encouragement and support of outside help to better his life.
Remember, they don't call him the "Man of the Year" for nothing.
By Z, who loves to argue with you on Twitter.