Gregory Martinez
Gregory Martinez

Residents in Wilmington are rallying to support the family of a 12-year-old boy who died accidentally at home earlier this week.

Fundraisers to collect money for Gregory Martinez's funeral expenses and to assist his parents and 12 siblings are scheduled throughout the weekend.

Gregory drowned while taking a bath Sunday, possibly after suffering an epileptic seizure. His grandmother found him and called paramedics. Gregory was pronounced dead at County Harbor-UCLA Medical Center.

Coroner's officials ruled Gregory's death an accident following an autopsy Thursday.

Gregory's aunt, Sandra Torres, said her nephew suffered from epilepsy but had not had an episode in about two years.

"When you talk about a kid who lived his life to the fullest, that was Gregory," Torres said. "He was the athlete of the family. He played baseball, sports. He was always coming over and playing with his cousins. You knew when Gregory was home and when he wasn't."

Gregory, one of 13 children ranging in age from 3 to 18, attended school at Wilmington Park Elementary and was a seventh-grader at Wilmington Middle School. He played football and baseball with the Wilmington-Carson Pilots.

Organizers with the youth sports league have scheduled a movie night fundraiser for 6 p.m. Friday at John Mendez baseball field at Opp Street and Banning Boulevard. A car wash and food sale is slated for 10 a.m. Saturday at the park.

A cookout including taco plates, teriyaki and hot dogs also will be held at 11 a.m. Sunday at Banning Park on M Street.

Friends have also established a fund to assist the family online at http://ow.ly/f6U8x

"It's wonderful to feel how the community can come together," Torres said.

Visitation is set for 5 to 8p.m. Nov. 15 at All Souls Mortuary in Long Beach.

Services are set for 10 a.m. Nov. 16 at Holy Family Church in Wilmington.

larry.altman@dailybreeze.com

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