Broadway star, Ruthie Ann Miles, whose real name is Ruthie Ann Blumenstein, suffered the tragic loss of her 4-year-old daughter, Abigail, when a car ran a red light and hit both Miles and Abigail. The little girl died instantly, and Miles, who is seven months pregnant was taken to a Brooklyn hospital in stable condition. Along with Miles, Lauren Lew and her son, Joshua, were also hit. Joshua died as well. Both Lauren Lew and an unidentified 46-year-old man were taken to the hospital with injuries. It didn't take long for words of encouragement and offers of support to begin pouring out of Broadway once the news was released.
Ben Platt described Miles, who won a Tony in 2015 for the Broadway revival of The King and I, as "an incredible woman of unimaginable kindness and goodness and talent." And the kindness of others overflowed when Jack Stephens, identified as a company manager, started a Go Fund Me page for Miles and her family. The fundraiser has raised $305,454, which is $300,000 over the donation goal of $5,000 and has been shared over 37,000 times on Facebook.
Six-time Tony Award winner, Audra McDonald shared the link to the GoFundMe page to her 203,000 followers on Twitter, adding "This is heart shattering. Please help if you can and if you can't please send love and hope and prayers their way. Ruthie, I am sending you all the love and light in my heart today sweet lady."
The support continued with Sutton Foster, known for her Broadway role in Thoroughly Modern Millie, and Laura Benanti, who played Baroness Elsa Schräder in the 2013 NBC television production of The Sound of Music Live! retweeting the link to the donation page. Modern Family's Jesse Tyler Ferguson said his heart was shattered and urged people to "hold your loved ones close." Josh Gad, best known for playing Olaf in Frozen, said words couldn't express his sadness for Ruthie. Josh Groban, Raul E. Esparza, Phillipa Soo, and many more shared their condolences and the links to the donation page.
Broadway stars also extended their support to Lauren Lew by sharing the GoFundMe page for her family. It, too, has exceeded its donation goal of $5,000, with over $146,000 pouring in.