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From The Heart

Contributor ,

couple of years ago I was reading the newspaper and I came across an article that interested me. What first caught my eye was a picture of knitted squares all with the Virginia Tech colors.

Some of them had embroidered Tech symbols on them. The picture was beautiful but the story was sad because the squares had been carefully knitted by many different volunteers to later be sewn together for blankets and given to the victims of the shooting who were still here or to the families of the people that didn't make it. I called the number that was given in the article and decided that I wanted to be in on this wonderful charity project.

The organization's name is From the Heart and and it's creator is Lois Moore. Lois learned how to knit while recuperating from a surgery. The idea came about while watching someone knit in a Starbuck's coffee shop. Lois's organization has grown to over one thousand knitters in the seven years that it's been around. Blankets, chemo hats, socks, and many more knitted and crocheted items are given to hospitals and various other organizations. People donate yarn and occasionally classes are given in the shop in Richmond, Virginia.

I got involved because of the picture of the Tech squares and was impressed with all these people that came together to create blankets for the people that had to go through that terrible tragedy. Also, my father passed away from cancer several years ago and at the chemo center I noticed a basket with various colorful hats in it. The chemo center was a cold environment and I didn't feel that the people working there were particularily receptive to my father and no one there even told me that I could have picked up a hat for my Dad. I don't want to criticize all of the medical people because I've been around some really good doctors and nurses before but maybe sometimes the stress of the job possibly makes people immune to peoples feelings. That day I also noticed a young woman that was wearing a beautiful shawl in a pretty red color and I wondered if someone had made it for her. My point is, when your sick or down and out any little thing that you can do to lift someones spiirits will help.

That's what Lois Moore's organization does for people. A bright colored hat may make a child feel better before having to go through a grueling chemo therapy session. The homeless man on the street corner that we all drive by pretending not to see might appreciate being a little bit warmer with a scarf wrapped around him. Years ago when my son was an infant and he had to have a three hour surgery I remember a kind hearted nurse coming over to him and letting him grab as many little stuffed toys as he wanted to take with him. I remember thinking at the time somewhere a volunteer sat there patiently sewing the toys just so a child like my son could feel a little more at ease.

Jude Hamilton


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