Angels can be found everywhere

Published 12:31 pm Friday, April 13, 2007

During the middle of January, a young mother, Jayna Stogner, called me to ask if I would host a quilt raffle at my store to help raise money for desperately-needed hyperbaric oxygen treatments for her little 3-year-old boy, Nicholas, who is an angel, a miracle baby born premature with cerebral palsy, and cerebral vision impairment.

Nicholas is blind, and he can’t hold his head up. The status of this type of treatment is considered experimental, so insurance companies will not cover the costs, which will be around $14,000. After speaking to one of the therapists who works with Nicholas, and has done extensive research, miracles are possible for Nicholas if he has these treatments.

Through garage sales, and holiday cooking for other families, Jayna and her family have raised money but were only half way to their goal.

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Sue Lewis decided to make a beautiful quilt to raffle. The raffle and party for Nicholas will be held at Sandi’s Fabric Outlet on April 21 at 4 p.m. So many angels have volunteered to sell raffle tickets.

My son and daughter, their friends and many others are giving of themselves to help this cause. Jayna told me that she wanted to contact Angel Flight of Georgia, to see if they would assist in the travel arrangements for her and Nicholas

While speaking to the volunteer-coordinator of Angel Flight of Georgia, Bernadette Darnell shared some information about Justin Cardneaux, who was one of their most beloved angels.

She said, “Justin was one of our finest. I would have chosen Justin to be the pilot to fly Nicholas and his mom. If there was ever an emergency situation, I could always count on Justin. He will be remembered as one of the best volunteer pilots we have ever had. He definitely earned his wings and halo.

We all loved him and will miss him. Justin’s missions averaged 8-12 per year, helping those who were in financial and medical need of potential life-saving treatments. In 2001, after the World Trade Center disaster, when all airports were closed, he was involved in the Angel Flight of Georgia Disaster Relief effort to transfer blood samples from hospitals all over Mississippi to hospitals in Texas to keep the supply moving. In the wake of Hurricanes Katrina and Rita, Justin was one of the “first responders” to help fly over 450 relief missions, transporting life sustaining supplies, medical equipment, and volunteer personnel in some of the hardest hit areas of the disaster. He was a great humanitarian who will be missed by loved ones and friends he left behind, especially the lives of those he has touched through his contribution and support as a volunteer with Angel Flight of Georgia.

He didn’t boast about the good that he did for others. He didn’t even talk about it. He just did it. Justin Cardneaux was truly one of our unsung heroes. He gave of himself to help others.

My parents instilled in all of their children the importance of the golden rule. I believe that our sole purpose on this earth is to help others. There is an angel in all of us. We just need to show it by giving of ourselves to help others.

Come join us at 4 p.m. on April 21 at Bellemont Shopping Center to meet little Nicholas and his angels who have made all of this possible.

If you would like to be an angel for Nicholas by selling or buying raffle tickets, or making a donation, please contact me at Sandi’s Fabric Outlet, 175 Hwy. 61 South Suite 16, Natchez, MS 39120.

Sandra Doherty is a Natchez resident.