Today at work I was standing near the front of the checkpoint when I saw a passenger needing additional help. The passenger, who I found out a little was named Jason, add dropped his white cane on the floor and was struggling with the items in his bag. I picked up his cane and handed it to him and said, “Hi, my name is Kelly can I assist you?” I noticed he had hearing aid and a lanyard around his neck that he was deaf and had very poor vision. I placed my hand on his shoulder to slow him from fumbling with his bag. I made eye contact and slowly said I was there to help him. Jason seem a little frantic to make sure everything was where it needed to be. Slowly I guided Jason to the body scanner and make sure the officers there knew what was happening; he had a few things in his pockets that required the area to be patted down. One the items was a pad of paper and a pen, realizing now I could write notes would make my communication easier. I met Jason on the other side of the scanner and took him to the table in the back, thankfully my co-worker Pam was there to help gather his items. I had Jason sit down as I handed him his shoes. I told Pam how to repack his bag. I wrote notes in my note pad, in big letters with my blue Sharpie, to Jason that his belonging were back in the bag and where his gate was; he said OK. Jason flight was not going leave for a couple hours, I wrote that I would be at work until 11:00am if he needed anything to come and find me. He left me with this note “Thanks for making things go smooth thru TSA.” He touched me on my shoulder and smiled. I kept an eye out for Jason until his flight was going to board. When it was time for boarding, I went to the gate. When I didn’t see Jason, I asked the gate agent if he had boarded, he had just a few minutes before I got there.
John Shirk has been a friend of mine for 40 years. John is family and in my family we take care of each other. In 2009, he was diagnosed with Synovial Sarcoma; a rare form of cancer which usually occurs near to the joints of arm, neck or leg; since the diagnoses the cancer has spread to include tumors on his lung. John wants to make a trip to Disney World happen for his family.
I have done a lot of fundraising for and supporting of various causes and non-profits and I don't usually see the impact of my donation or work. This fundraiser is personal and I get to see firsthand how a simple donation can make a difference.
Thank you to everyone who has already donated. In the past three days we have raised over $2,500! No matter the amount, it all adds up. #MakeADifference #Share