Saturday, March 14, 2015

If You Can Dodge A Wrench

They say "if you can dodge a wrench, then you can dodge a ball."

Well, I'm pretty sure I can't dodge a wrench, and after watching today's dodgeball tournament at Hillsboro High School, I'm pretty sure I can't dodge a ball either.

This morning, the Hillsboro High School Interact Club and National Honor Society hosted a dodgeball tournament as a fundraiser for the INAD research study, and Grace was the special guest of honor.

Grace and the grand champion dodgeball team.
Shortly after the first of the year, the National Honor Society sponsor Kristy Andrews called me at work with the idea for the fundraiser.  At the time, Kyle and I had several requests to do fundraisers for Grace and our family, and we had been telling everyone no.  But since we had just started our crowdrise page to raise funds for the INAD research study, I told Kristy we would talk about it.

Kyle and I were hesitant to do any fundraisers for Grace because for the most part, our insurance covered everything we needed for her care.  However, the more we looked into the research study at Washington University, the more excited we got about it, and figured the fundraising would be one way that we could help.

Grace got a new snuggly teddy bear and flowers as the guest of honor.
So, I called Kristy back to tell her that we were honored they wanted to do this for our family.  Really, Kristy has sort of been like family for a long time, since she worked at the paper and was friends with my brother, Johnny, in high school.  In addition, the president of the National Honor Society this year, also works for the newspaper and helps babysit Grace some of the time.

After some correspondence back and forth, Kristy told me they were planning the tournament on Saturday, March 14, and I offered to write up a news item for the paper.  With everything set in place, we were really excited for the big day.

Some action from the tournament.
We didn't make it for the start of the tournament, but arrived in time for the last few games.  There were about ten teams, including one faculty team, signed up to participate.  When we got there, Kristy gave Grace a vase of flowers and a super soft teddy bear, since she was the guest of honor.  She was excited to snuggle with her new bear.

More tournament action.
As we stood on the sidelines and watched the tourney, one student came over and ask if she could take our photo.  She said she had been telling all her friends on Google+ about the tournament, and they thought it was really neat.  Another team asked if they could get their photo taken with Grace too.  It's hard to believe sometimes that she's a little local celebrity.  She could sign autographs if I could convince her that crayons were fun.   It was also really neat to see many of the high school kids sporting "Gracelets" in her honor.

Grace and I watching the tournament with Grandma and Grandpa Galer.
We sat and watched several of the games, and it was neat to see all the kids having such a good time. I also decided that I'm probably way too old to play dodgeball, since I haven't even looked at one since I was in high school (which contrary to what Kyle says was NOT in the Stone Age).

Kristy sent me a message after the tourney to say they raised around $700 for the INAD study, which is just incredible. We feel so honored and humbled to be adopted by this community, which six months ago didn't even know that INAD existed.  Now, they are with us every step of the way, helping us find an end to this disease one dodgeball at a time.

All the kids who played in the dodgeball tournament today were winners in our book!

1 comment:

  1. I applaud you all for your constant determination. I know the research team will be pleasantly surprised with your fundraising. Gracie is such a happy girl and she is blessed with a family of love.