To the Shelby Whippets community,
There are times when the words “thank you” don't seem adequate. I don't mean that we don't feel gratitude; quite the opposite. We feel so much gratitude that the simple words “thank you” just don't seem to convey our appreciation.
This past Saturday night at the Whippets game against St. Peter's, my family was the recipient of what I can only describe as the most selfless display of giving that I have ever seen. But I'm getting ahead of myself.
My son Noah, who will be 18 soon, was born with trisomy 8, a genetic condition. He was also deprived of oxygen at birth, which resulted in cerebral palsy. He cannot walk, talk, or even sit up on his own. He lives his life in a wheelchair.
All we've ever wanted for Noah is to be accepted by his peers despite his limitations. We've been taking Noah to the boys basketball games for several years, and in that time, he's been called the Whippets number one fan. He won the Sixth Man award several years ago.
His mother and I use a van modified with a ramp to get Noah around. It wasn't new when we acquired it, but it more than fulfills our needs. Recently, the van has been experiencing problems which we found out would be quite costly to fix. We had no idea how we were going to afford these repairs.
Word of this got out and Noah's Earth angels took over. We were informed that at the basketball game Saturday evening, the 50/50 drawing, the three-point shooting contest, and other events would all be used to help raise the money needed to fix Noah's van.
We didn't know what to expect. The residents of Shelby have been very good to Noah in the past when we've held benefits for him. We've always felt blessed to live in a community that responds so quickly to help others.
To say the money-making efforts were successful would be an understatement. The total collected was announced at the game; I won't bother to write it here, but rest assured, the repairs to Noah's van are paid for, with extra left over to start a contingency fund for the future.
It wasn't only the Shelby fans who responded. We received an envelope of money from St. Pete's fans as well, and the Spartans JV team all came over and gave Noah fist-bumps before their game started. Classy stuff, St. Pete's. Thank you so much.
So, with all this gratitude in our hearts, and the words “thank you” feeling quite inadequate, what words do we use? I wish I knew.
Thank you, Shelby.
I think I'm wrong when I say those words are inadequate. They're perfect in their simplicity. It's the heart behind the words that completes their meaning.
From the very bottom of our hearts, Thank You, Shelby.
Thank you for once again responding to Noah's needs. Thank you for stopping to say hello to Noah and to us when you see us out and about. Thank you for the love we feel around us every day as we continue our journey as Noah's parents and caregivers. And thank you for embracing both Noah, because he's so deserving of love, and us, which helps keep us strong as we live day to day trying to make Noah's life as complete and full as we can.
It's a privilege and an honor to live in this community.
Thank you, and God bless you all.
Scott Sheaffer, Susan Sheaffer, Emily Sheaffer, Brad and Morgan Schneider