I was asked to speak a little bit about Jack's story. I did my best to summarize our eternity that has occurred over the past 4 and a half years, and make it so elementary school students would stay interested. Jack just had to be there. When he walked through the doors it was though royalty had entered Westland. The student council shook his hands and gave him hugs, and on our way to the Gym all the kids in line would give him "five" and tell him hello. Everyone was crowding around him, asking him questions about Lightning McQueen, and Disneyworld.
Jack was LOVING IT. He would just look into all the eyes of these strangers and smile. It was as though he truly felt gratitude in his heart. (We were particularly proud because he'd had problems with being nice to strangers lately...) He even volunteered to show off his scars, and was very proud of them.
After I spoke, we showed a slideshow of picture from Jack's birth to today, including some of the serious shots of him right after surgery, and the kids' response was so genuine and heartfelt, you could feel it in the whole room.
As a whole they collected over $1500 to help send our family to Disneyworld. It was so humbling to think of all these kids that were so happy that they were a part of this. It really makes you think about how special little kids are, and how they can be examples to us. There were a few children that brought gifts for Jack, out of the goodness of their hearts; they bought him CARS toys, Oreo's, Mater trucks, coloring books.... it was incredible. I'm so glad we captured all of these videos, (thanks to Nat for the FLIP and Mom for the filming..) because later on in life he'll be able to see how special he was to all these little kids at Westland Elementary school.
We hope that after we go on our trip, we can return to Westland to share with them the fun that we had, BECAUSE of them- and keep them updated on Jack's condition. I'm currently working on gifts for all 616 students....