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Instead of gifts, teen wants St. Jude donations

Party this Sat. to benefit children’s hospital

Kenzie Williams wants friends and family to give a gift to St. Jude Children's Research Hospital for her birthday. Her party is being held this Saturday at the Pickens County Community Center from 1 - 5 p.m. The community is invited.
“She’s always marched to the beat of her own drummer and been very independent and caring,” said a teary Brandy McClure, mother of Kenzie Williams.
    Williams, a 15-year-old who splits her time between her mother’s home in Pickens and her father’s home in Calhoun, is asking that instead of birthday gifts, friends and family donate a gift or money to the St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital.

    The mission of St. Jude’s is to advance cures and prevention for pediatric diseases through research and treatment. No child is turned away because of inability to pay for services.
    Both Williams’ mother and her grandmother, Stacy McClure, say Kenzie came up with the idea of donating items to the children’s hospital in lieu of gifts last year for her 14th birthday party, and that she has plans to do it from this point on.
    “We didn’t suggest it,” Stacy said, who noted that Kenzi is not allowed to take a tour of the hospital until she is 16 because of hospital rules. “She just came to me and said she wants to do a fundraiser. I can’t say enough about her and about how proud I am of who she is. She has always taken to kids and they have always taken to her. She’s natural with them and mothering and has such a big place in her heart for them.”
    Last year Kenzie’s birthday party was held in Gordon County, where her father John Williams lives. This year, Kenzie wanted to have the party in Pickens so she could “make this as big as we can.”
    “I read that St. Jude’s doesn’t turn anyone away and that inspired me,” Kenzie said, a self-motivated honor student at Gordon Central High School. “And now that’s where I want to do my residency and work in pediatric oncology. I take care of my younger sister, and I really love kids. I don’t care at all that I don’t get presents.”
    Kenzie and her family are inviting their family, friends and the community to “Kenzie’s Quest for a Cure” this Saturday, March 9 from 1-5 p.m. at the Pickens County Community Center at 1329 Camp Rd.
    There will be games and prizes, baked goods and refreshments, with all proceeds going to St. Jude.
    Monetary donations will be accepted at the event. St Jude’s is a non-profit and monetary donations are tax deductible. You can also bring an item from the Patient Gift List provided by St. Jude’s, see page 6B of this paper.
    If you would like to make a donation through Kenzie’s Quest for a Cure but are unable to attend the event, contact Stacy McClure at 770-894-2988 or Brandy McClure at 770-704-1194.
    Above, Kenzie Williams is asking for donations to a children’s hospital instead of birthday gifts.


Chris Allen
+2 #1 Chris Allen 2013-03-06 17:36
I think this is one of the kindest most unselfish things I've ever seen. She obviously has a huge heart and an amazing spirit. Besides being one of the most beautiful young ladies I've ever seen she is one of those rare teens that thinks of others more than herself. We need more people like her in this world. People that put the needs of others ahead of their own wants. I'm proud of her. I will be a big supporter of St. Jude's from now on. Thank you Kenzie for the inspiration you are to all of us. "CMA"
Charles O. Hendrix J
+1 #2 Charles O. Hendrix J 2013-03-08 00:10
I agree with Mr. Allen. One of the things that separates mankind from the animal kingdom is our ability to show compassion and care for others. This is a fine example of what it means to be human and put others before our self. I think a lot of "adults" could learn something from this young lady. Thank You Kenzie for setting an outstanding example for others to follow.

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