There are heroes everywhere, but I have found some truly outstanding ones. In my blog last year, I wrote the story of Kelsey, a young girl who had been severly abused until she was 3, when she was adopted by two Heroes - Heidi and Peter. Heidi and Peter have helped mold Kelsey into one of the most amazing young ladies I have ever met. I met Kelsey for the first time last year when Kelsey had a birthday party and donated all of her gifts to my 2010 Komen walk. $1,000! This year, Kelsey and Heidi endured the most unimaginable loss - Peter passed away unexpectedly of a heart attack. This man was the picture of health. He was in great physical shape. He was a true hero -- not just to Heidi and Kelsey, but to so many others. After making a huge donation to my walk last year, Peter turned to my daughter, Katie and handed her a large donation to her upcoming Juvenile Diabetes walk. Peter had previously lost his brother to Juvenile Diabetes. He was so compassionate, kind and understanding.
This year, after just losing her father, Peter, I was shocked to learn that Kelsey was again going to do a birthday party and donate the proceeds to my 2011 Komen walk. Kelsey just turned 11.... and suffered the worst year. Yet she still wants to do something outside herself in an effort to cure breast cancer. Kelsey was impacted by a teacher in her school who had been diagnosed with breast cancer. Kelsey started planning her party and that's where more heroes come into the story. Asha, a friend of Kelsey's with a birthday at the same time asked if she could join in. Kelsey and Asha combined their parties and asked that all gifts be made to Susan G. Komen for the Cure. WOW. Asha is just turning 10 and already is learning what is important. I'm so grateful to Asha for joining in and making the event even bigger. Then, there are Asha's parents. Chris and Mahdu - obviously heroes - they are raising a great girl. I remember meeting Mahdu at last year's party - she is a special woman.
At the party, everyone wore the same TShirts, breast cancer headbands and beads. It was a stunning event with tons of kids. It was held at CoCo Key Water Resort. Asha and Kelsey had made a gift bag for me with breast cancer items inside. My favorite item is my pink rubber survivor bracelet, which I now wear every day. It reminds me of what it means to be a survivor. Being a survivor means never giving up, making the most of whatever is dealt to you and turning it into the best example you can possibly make it. Heidi and Kelsey are not only heroes, they are true survivors.
Thank you to my heroes - Kelsey and Asha, Chris and Mahdu and dear Heidi and of course, Peter, who I will never forget.
The money is still coming in from the Birthday party.... but the total raised so far by these young ladies is.... $2,160. Now, if 2 young girls can raise that much money in 1 day, what can we all do if we put our minds to it?
Thank you Kelsey and Asha. You are in my heart forever!