anne_mikolay_120Hugs for Halie, a group begun by Halie Palmer's friends and their parents, continues to work tirelessly to support Halie. Halie, as previously mentioned here, is an eleven year old Thorne Middle School student who has been stricken with medulloblastoma, a brain tumor that originates in the cerebellum. In the upcoming weeks, there are two Hugs for Halie fund raisers that I urge you to participate in.

First, this coming weekend, Hugs for Halie is sponsoring a clothing drive to raise funds for Halie's family. The organization is collecting clean, usable, and wearable clothing (men's, women's, and children's), shoes and accessories (handbags, belts, scarves, ties and hats), also soft household items (bedding, curtains, tablecloths, towels), hard toys, and stuffed animals. Collection drop-off will be at Thorne Middle School Friday, April 17th, from 3:00 pm to 5:00 pm, and Saturday, April 18th, from 8:00 am to 2:00 pm. All items collected will be donated to families in need; 13 cents per pound collected will be donated to Halie's family.

The following week, on Monday, April 27th, JakeaBob's Bay Restaurant, located at 525 Front Street in Union Beach, will host a Dining for Dollars evening to benefit Halie's family. JakeaBob's Bay will donate 15% of its proceeds that evening up to $3,000, and 20% over $3,000 to the Palmer family. A Dining for Dollars flyer (found at www.jakeabobs.com) must be presented to your server in order for Halie to receive this benefit. This fund raiser was organized by JakeaBob's employee, Leah Mezzacappa of Middletown.

halie
Halie Palmer

This organization a clear example of what community fellowship is all about. Halie's fellow Thorne Middle School students have rallied around her. Recently, thirteen year old student Erin Finn of Middletown, along with her mother, her brothers, and several Mary Mother of God parish prep students, spent a Sunday morning at Mary Mother of God Church selling Hugs for Halie bracelets after each mass. Erin and her mother, Doris, successfully sold 322 bracelets, and raised $1,000 in sales, and an additional $700 in donations. Doris Finn has also begun a prayer chain for Halie: each evening at 6:00 pm, she asks that people think of Halie, and offer a prayer for her recovery.

A lot is being planned to assist Halie, and in the future, I will use this column occasionally to highlight the group's efforts, and invite your participation. The Hugs for Halie clothing drive is a great opportunity to do some spring cleaning, and help Halie and her family at the same time. When the dinner hour rolls around on Monday, April 27th, go on over to JakeaBob's in Union Beach, and take advantage of their generous fund raiser for Halie.

You can give a Hug to Halie!