Healing Voices

An Aug. 31 fundraiser will be held at The Queen for singer Terretta Howard, who was hit by a car in June

Things were looking up for Terretta Howard. The lead singer of local rock-soul group Terretta Storm had just signed a single-release deal with White Lion Audio and was anticipating the band’s upcoming EP, Take Me Home.

But in a moment, everything changed. On June 14, while crossing the street near her home in Wilmington, Howard was hit by a car. After being revived twice on the scene, she was rushed to Christiana Hospital, where she’s been receiving ongoing medical care.

“She is making progress,” says Kenneth Hawkes, her boyfriend and band manager. “She opens her eyes. The leg that is broken, she’s not moving that yet. Everything else, she’s trying to move. But she doesn’t stay conscious…. Her brain is rewiring itself.”

As Howard heals, her family, friends, fans and fellow musicians have circled the wagons in support. On Saturday, Aug. 31, from 2 p.m. to 11 p.m., The Queen will host a fundraiser, Community United: A Benefit for Terretta, to help offset her medical costs.

The event will feature live performances from Darnell Miller, Jay Street Jr., Sky King, Black Cat Habitat, Crafting, Richard Raw, and Ghetto Songbird. In addition, Howard’s bandmates will play a short set, with a special guest vocalist performing many of Howard’s songs.

The event is free; however, organizers—which include Gable Music Ventures and Tri-State Underground—will be accepting donations at the door. The band’s EP also will be released that day, and all merchandise sales will go toward the cause as well.

“All band and music stuff aside, we just want Terretta as a person to be whole again,” says Terretta Storm bassist Randy Waters.

A teacher in the Christina School District, Howard works with students with special needs. She has balanced that career with singing at night and performing with the band on weekends.

The tragedy comes at a time when Terretta Storm has been making significant strides. The band was finding success in cities like New York and Boston while gaining more attention locally.

In the May edition of Out & About, Mark Rogers, the host of WSTW’s Hometown Heroes, wrote that Howard is a “great vocalist, dynamic front-woman and a talented songwriter who has put together a fantastic band.”

“I’ve always thought she was talented,” Hawkes says. “She’s one the best songwriters I’ve ever met. But for some reason people weren’t paying much attention locally. Terretta has always wanted to be appreciated locally. When that finally started to happen, I could see a different spark in her eye.”

At press time, Howard’s insurance company, which covers employees of Christina School District, has denied coverage for her to be transferred to Bryn Mawr Rehab Hospital, which offers specialized brain injury treatments.

“It’s imperative that she gets rehab,” Hawkes says. “She’s been recommended to go to this facility, because they feel she needs the help. The doctors have recommended her twice and they don’t understand why [she’s being denied coverage].”

“She is in a dire situation,” he added.

For event updates, check the Terretta Storm Facebook page and thequeenwilmington.com.

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