On this fine July evening, Division Director Nina Aliprandi and Program Director Amy Kendal-Lynch gave the ladies a tour of the Crisis Nursery first, where Sarah Wood, wife of Cub reliever Kerry Wood, swept up 20-month Ayomide and read The Big Red Dog to him and several other little ones.
Then the ladies went to the other side of the CFC for an informative walk-through of the Children's Healthcare facility.
The wives and children had many questions about our services and what kinds of things we could use. As these wives and mothers gathered the children into their arms, we snapped a few photos of the babies and toddlers. Luzem Soto, wife of Cubs catcher Geovany Soto, read to little Ahmad. Several of the teenage children were welcome visitors to a few of the boys in the Healthcare Center who were glad to have the opportunity to share their video gaming systems with fresh competition. The visit was very meaningful for the ladies. This visit was especially important to Sarah Wood who left the building with little Ayomide still in her arms as her friends were hollering to her from the windows of their vehicle that it was time to go so they could make the first pitch. We thought we might have to summon the Jaws of Life to separate Sarah and Ayomide.
But as she said goodbye, Sarah assured Amy and Nina that she would be back soon and would like to talk to us about how the Cubs wives can partner with us.
We welcome these good and caring women and any help they might provide.
Foundation founder, James "Big Cat" Williams hosted an inaugural bowling event to support Maryville Academy's Center for Children and CYO and Debra's Place and invited a host of his football friends. Representatives from the 1985 Chicago Bears, Richard Dent, Otis Wilson, Keith Van Horne, Glen Kozlowski and Jim Morrissey, along with a number of other celebrities, were on hand to bowl away the evening. Special thanks to Delana Price, co-founder and executive director of Big Cat Charities, for organizing this great event. The children and families of Maryville's Center for Children and CYO participants would like to thank everyone that attended, volunteered or supported this worth while event.