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Vincent's Story Brings Contributions, Donations

March 27, 1997|PAUL DEAN

Americans have again opened their hearts to Mary Vincent.

A final total has yet to be counted, but more than 1,500 personal contributions have been received to date for the 34-year-old Washington woman, who 19 years ago lost her hands when raped and mutilated by Lawrence Singleton. Singleton, who served eight years of his 14-year sentence for the California attack, was arrested in Florida last month and charged in the stabbing murder of a prostitute.

News reports of that attack stirred Vincent's old nightmares, and in a Life & Style interview she shared her thoughts, hopes, pain and continuing misfortunes--including the disrepair of her old hooks.

Her story brought contributions ranging from a $1 bill from a Costa Mesa schoolgirl to a $15,000 donation from a Carlsbad businessman. Off-duty Santa Ana police officers visited Mark Edwards, Vincent's attorney, and volunteered to open envelopes. A Catholic bishop sent money and said he is remembering Vincent in his prayers.

"All contributions will be held in a trust fund for Mary's two sons," Edwards says. "She has been touched and is very grateful for this huge, national outpouring."

Edwards also reports a gift of new dexterity for Vincent.

NovaCare, a prosthetics manufacturer in King of Prussia, Pa., is fitting Vincent with a new set of artificial hands.

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