Saturday, July 21, 2012

A note about what we do

A few years ago I was at dinner before one of the JDRF rides. We had made our way from Michigan out to Death Valley. The 100 mile ride through the desert would start early the next morning. A variety of people spoke that evening. They talked about how much money we had collectively raised. They told us to be safe out on the road. And they gave awards to the top fundraisers and recruiters. One speaker, unfortunately I don't remember who it was, said something that has stayed with me ever since. He said "What you're doing here is important. You never know whose life you are going to impact." That lesson was made very clear this week.

Every year, as part of our fundraising, we send out a donation request letter to our friends and family. One year we also put a notice in our church bulletin. That year we received a donation from a woman from church. We knew who she was, but she was barely an acquaintance. She was one of those people you say hello to every week, but it doesn't really go any farther than that. In subsequent years we would send her a letter and she was always one of the first to send a donation. And every year the amount of the donation grew. We were perplexed. Why was this woman being so generous to the cause? Yesterday we found out. Included with her check was a note card that said this: "Best of luck with this year's ride. Appreciate your commitment to JDRF. It was 25 years this summer that I lost a sister to J.D. She died at the age of 34. God bless. Mary Ellen" You never know whose life you are going to impact.

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