That title just emphasizes that good-natured Christy openly encourages one-legged jokes. She’s now taking names for her future prosthetics (“Ilene” …get it?).
Now, on to new photos, one step – or hop! – at a time 🙂
Can’t keep a good girl down.
Christy beams with energy and offers me her wheelchair 🙂 :
^^ I’m wearing a shirt given by our mutual friend, Sarah Pitre, a Make-a-Wish (M-a-W) Foundation ‘wish kid’ who met Christy at another honoree’s event.
Christy and I met in Colorado ~2007 while she attended the U.S. Air Force Academy (USAFA). I witnessed Christy’s generous heart through the M-a-W “Cadet for a Day” (C4aD) program.
Also stationed in NV: Lauren (McKinnon) Sahagun, a C4aD staff member with Christy. She had already sent a gift for Christy’s room and wanted to show more long-distance support, so I brought these photos of her holding the collage to Christy. Lauren in NV:
Erik Gonsalves was also a C4aD Cadet-In-Charge with Christy. Lauren and Erik couldn’t join me in TX, but wanted to be there in spirit. Christy’s eyes sparkled and her contagious smile broke out when she saw pics of their faces again. Erik in NV:
During our visit, we caught up on friends and co-workers like Maggie Appenzeller, M-a-W of Colorado’s Wish Grantor. I dialed her up and we all enjoyed chatting on speakerphone, talking about M-a-W kids Christy had welcomed to USAFA, and how so many of them had triumphed over their physical challenges.
From there, I learned of the daunting challenges ahead for Christy to fly again in a military cockpit: a mountain of medical exams and paperwork …and that’s only after successful rehab, which is enough to kick the tail of most mere mortals. Christy’s the only person I know that can kick butt with just one leg. I have faith that soon she will add this to her growing list of miracles.
A running theme on this blog is miracles of divine intervention. That’s what allowed me to see Christy in San Antonio. I needed an Inspector General training course, but it was full: I was #51 in a class of 50. Miraculously, they found room for me! Never had that happen before. Most importantly — I got to see Christy.
Finally: was SO impressed by Katie Schuler, Christy’s friend and fellow C-130 pilot who drove from NM to stay with her. Can’t say enough good about Katie.
If you can make it out to see Christy or reach out in any other way, please do!
Make-a-Wish “Cadet for a Day” Officer-In-Charge / Reserve Advisor, 2001-2011
P.S. C4aD links to Christy’s work for M-a-W guests:
– Julian Willis, R.I.P.
– Corbin Leonard (pages 12-13)
– Ryan Hanna (p. 12)
– Georgina Gonsales (p. 14-15 and here)
– JaVaughn Nelson (p. 14)
– Willie Presley (on the cover and p. 15)
– Joe Hayford