Friday evening, we (finally) made it downtown to the Hero Pasta Party. It was a special night that we had been looking forward to for a long time. We still talk about last year's party and the young girl, 14 years old I believe, that raised a huge amount of money for St. Jude and we were hoping that our girls would be able to do that someday. Well, their day was now and with help hundreds of individuals, businesses, strangers, family, and friends, our girls were able to raise over $208,000 for St. Jude in honor of their little brother Ingram. They did not do this by themselves by any means, but they sure worked as hard as they could and spent their summer in business meetings, lunches, and traveling around town and around the country trying to raise as much money as they could to give Ingram and all the other children a better chance. The girls were the #2 and #3 Top Individual Fundraisers for the Marathon Weekend and Team Ingram/Team Vining was the Top Team Fundraiser this year which was very exciting.
While we are so proud of them for everything they've done and everything they've been through with their little brother Ingram, they received a very special honor this evening. Last year, ALSAC started a new award to give out to the person that proved to be a hero to everyone. The 14 year old girl who raised all the money last year for her brother was the first receipient of the award and this year, it also went to a sibling of a patient. Madison and Lindsey were named the 2012 St. Jude Memphis Marathon Weekend "Heroes Among Us" and given the "A Hero Among Us" Award by Rick Shadyac, the CEO of ALSAC. They received a standing ovation for their efforts and we couldn't have been more proud of them. Craig was also asked to share a bit of our story and our experience at St. Jude and my sister Amye recorded it on her phone, but it's a fairly big video and I'm not exactly the most techinal savvy one in the family. Once it's ready, we will load it onto the blog and make it it's own entry. Until then, just know that it's great and you don't want to miss it! It's not the best quality video (she just got the phone a day earlier and was trying to figure it out), but the content I believe is priceless. The first part is Rick Shadyac talking about the girls and then Craig follows him.
Another great thing about Friday night was that we were able to meet several other St. Jude patients and their families and hear part of their stories. We even met several other brain tumor patients that were further down their journey than us and felt like we were instantly family; you would never thing that someone saying "Look at her; she's a brain tumor survivor!" would bring on the tears in an instant like it did! They were tears of joy for them and hope for us, but they came rolling down so quickly. The exciting part was that they were all survivors and had been through many of the things that we had; one day we hope to encourage other families like we were encouraged when we met these families, who also were running as Heroes.
|Mark Allen Giving The Team Ingram/Team Vining Fundraising Total...over $405,000!|
|Uh Oh! No Telling What Ingram The Conqueror Is Going To Say!!|
"Get Your Move On!"
|Good Thing Mark Was Quick!|
Ingram Had His Vuvuzeala Pointed Right At His Head Ready To Blow!
|Everyone In The Building Heard His Hoot I Feel Certain!|
|Lindsey Standing On Top Of Her Chair To Wave To The Crowd |
As Her Name Was Called At The #3 Fundraiser!
|Madison Wasn't Quiet As Quick To Jump Up On Her Chair, But After A Little Encouraging By Mr. Shadyac, She Hopped Up As Well As The #2 Fundraiser!|
|Craig Telling The St. Jude Heroes Why They Are Our Personal Heroes!|
|Our Main Hero, Ingram The Conqueror!|
|We're Going To Have To Find A Special Place For This!|
|Mr. Shadyac Holding Ingram While The Rest Of Us Are Holding Our Breathe|
Wondering What Ingram Is Going To Say In The Microphone!
|Part Of Team Ingram/Team Vining!|