A Mission Of Love gives out a gift each month The Best Day Award, to honor the memory of our daughter Stephaine K Marshall. The "Best Day Award" was inspired by the last conversation her and I ever had. The goal of this award is to make a day a little better for a child or family affected by cancer. It takes faith, hope, courage, motivation and inspiration in the fight against cancer. This journey is an emotional roller coaster that will present many obstacles to overcome along the way. With our daughter I made it a goal to keep each day filled with love and laughter to make the journey a little easier. I hope this gesture in memory of our daughter can do the same for other young warriors and their loved ones. Listed below our the Best Day award recipients.
January: We actually presented this gift in December to the family of a 2 year old girl named Leah. Her family was given the heartbreaking news that there was nothing else that could be done for her. We raised $590.00 for the family with a 50/50 raffle at our Comedy 4 Cancer December 3rd show. Unfortunately a couple of days after Krystal delivered the money, Leah passed away. Out of respect to her family no picture will be posted.
February: This month was all the proof you need that childhood cancer is not rare. I had the pleasure of meeting Carolina a sweet 9 year old girl. She is battling the same cancer our daughter had and lives 10 minutes from our house. Her courage, the pain in her parents eyes made this the first time I almost cried presenting a gift to a child. I long for the day these children get the best gift. Better treatment options that produce better results
March: The gift for this month was sent to Cheyanna Vogeler who lost her 4 year old son Maverick because of cancer. Same as the last time we did a gift in memory of a child. There will be no picture of the child posted.
April: Sent this one for the second month in a row out to Texas for a brave young man named Damon Billeck. He is battling his 3rd re occurrence of osteosarcoma, went through multiple surgeries and a stay in ICU. His parents want to get him a new game system. Hopefully the check I sent gives them a good start in making that happen. I sent this gift during March as we will be busy in April with 2 live event fundraisers.
May: We donated 100.00 to Treasa Sims on behalf of her brave young son who is battling Leukemia. We're also going to help them out with our next Comedy 4 Cancer show on September 30th.
June: I wanted to start sharing the good feeling of giving out this gift with members of our board of directors. Sara Gochanour selected this precious little girl to receive this months gift. Thanks to her Mom Elizabeth for the honor of allowing us to provide her with a check for 100.00. Hope you give Panda the best day possible with it.
July: On what would have been our daughters 16th birthday, we gave out this months gift. The gift went to a wonderful boy name Jonny. Even while facing his serious battle. He can still fine time to have fun and produce a smile that lit up his entire hospital room.
August: This was long overdue. It was an honor to be able to provide this months gift to Dr Kate Gowans. She was there for us from the beginning to the end with our daughters battle with cancer. She went from being our Oncologist to one of our most cherished friends. Hope the tablet and gift cards help out many kids, while you continue the wonderful work you do.
September: We donated 200.00 each to the following childhood cancer charities. Ryan Rocks, Alex's Arcade and Love, Team Tessa. We presented them with the donations at our September 30th Comedy 4 Cancer show.
January: In September I had the pleasure of meeting Rockne and his wonderful family when speaking at a rally in Harrisburg PA. With the new year starting I wanted to do something different with our first gift to start the new year. Instead of a gift I wanted to make a donation that not only helps the child, but also his family. If you would like to also assist them you can do so by clicking here
February: This was the second time I had the pleasure of giving Tessa our award and gift. She is an amazing little girl who has a smile that can brighten up an entire room. Presenting the award was my neighbor Little Miss Michigan Peytyn. It touched my heart that somebody so young wanted to be a part of what we do. Thanks to Karin and Bobby for allowing us the honor of giving Tessa our award and gift.
March: Once again we made a donation to a family instead of a gift. Financial stress is one of the hidden battles with childhood cancer. I hope our donation helps ease a little of that stress for Drew and his family. If you would like to also help Drew and his family click here.
April: The gift for April went to a cute little girl named Aurora. We presented the award during our debut show for Comedy 4 Cancer
May: This gift was given to the Webb family who experienced the loss of a loved one just like us.
June: I gave this award to two precious little girls in FT Wayne Indiana in honor of my friend, professional wrestler and childhood cancer survivor Zach Gowen
July: This month I gave our gift to a sweet little hero named Trista. She reminded me of my own daughter so much. That it made the gift that much more special giving it to her the day before Stephaine would have been 15. You can follow Trista and her story on Facebook
August: I drove 300 miles for a smile and it was worth it. I had the pleasure of meeting a brave young hero named Maddie. I presented her with our best day award and gift for August. But she also gave me a gift, a bracelet I will cherish forever. Not only is Maddie courageous but she takes the time to think of others. Besides giving me a gift she used her gift card to buy something for her brother and sister
September: This was a gift for all kids past, present and future who have or will battle cancer. We paid to host a free childhood cancer awareness rally on September 10th in Warren Michigan. We plan on making this a yearly event and will not stop until childhood cancer gets more than 4.
October: I have given gifts to the same child on multiple occasions and this month I did it again. After hearing about the brave girl Maddie I met in August having a bad day. I sent the family a financial gift so they could go out and have a better day. We're also helping this family with our next Comedy 4 Cancer show in December.
November / December: We combined these two months to help give Tracy Pagel and her family a better Christmas. We did our December Comedy 4 Cancer show to help them financially with bills at home. However we didn't want them to go without a decent Christmas so we gave them 200.00 and Kim Norman provided boxes of gifts for the children.
May : In memory of Cindi Hensley.
June : Royal Oak Beaumont Child Life Team. The Child Life team goes around the pediatric unit visiting children and trying to make their day a little better. What they do is what this award is all about. I figured we could help them out with their daily mission by providing 100.00 in Best Buy gift cards. Plus we also donated a WII game console and 26 games. Most people don't know this. Instead of selling games and DVD's for next to nothing. You can instead donate them to the hospital.
July 8th : Family Movie Night in Memory of Stephaine K Marshall. I decided to host this event and make it a yearly tradition. This would have been our daughters 14th birthday. I wanted to do something that would make other kids happy and honor Stephaine at the same time. We showed one of her favorite movies Despicable Me 2, which of course she loved because of the minions. We provided snacks for the children in the hospital and their loved ones. Stephaine and I have been known to crush a few cakes. So of course we had to have cake or something close to it. So we provided minion themed cupcakes. The last part of this gift was 30 minion themed gift bags. These were given out to patients only. This was our biggest gift to date and it was well worth it !
August : This one was presented early. His smile and love for minions touched my heart. So I wanted to send him to see the new movie without waiting until August.
September : This one was very special on so many levels. Noah is an inspiration to many kids fighting this battle. This was the first time we surprised a child with an in store gift. His Best Day got better when Best Buy decided to get in on the gifts. Brian Medlock gave Noah 2 DVD's and a video game on behalf of Best Buy. We preach teamwork makes the dream work all over this site. Today Best Buy became part of our team and made the day even better for Noah. Noah and his Mother Sara also teamed up to support another child in the hospital prior to us meeting them. I'm proud to have met this outstanding young man and his wonderful Mother.
October : This award was given to a beautiful little girl name Tessa. Getting to spend time talking with her Mom Karen, meeting Tessa and the rest of her family was a gift for myself. This months gift also proved that teamwork does make the dream work. It was the mother of another child battling cancer who nominated Tessa for this months gift. Thank you Krystal Hubbard for introducing me to these wonderful people.
November : I have had the pleasure of meeting some tremendous people while doing these gifts. One of them is Krystal Hubbard. This is the second time she passed up on receiving this award and gift to nominate another child. Pictured is this months best day award / gift recipient Alyssa, her mother Terri and I. It was my privilege to meet this wonderful young lady and her family.
December : It's tough enough dealing with a child battling cancer. The journey is filled with anxiety and a lot of emotional stress. Besides that there is also financial stress. In September we presented Noah with our gift back then, with help from Brian and Best Buy. I picked him for September because I was inspired by his story that he had beaten cancer. Unfortunately Noah is battling cancer for a second time. This time it's more serious, the treatments are more aggressive and the hospital stays are even longer. Once again Brian, Best Buy and I teamed up to give Noah our award for December. We provided Christmas gifts for Noah and his brother Nate. Then topped that off with an evening spent at Dave an Busters. This was our biggest gift to date and the perfect way to end 2015 for our Best Day award. It gave my family, Noah, his brother and his Mom an evening to forget about life for awhile. Noah and his family are always in my thoughts. Doing this for them was also a gift for myself. Just seeing the looks on their faces was priceless. Next year we will be doing more for all of them when we launch our live event fundraisers in April Comedy 4 Cancer . Hopefully you can join us for our debut event on April 16th 2016. Thanks to this wonderful family for allowing us to do this for them. Also thanks to Brian who has become a good friend and thank you Best Buy. All of you prove what we say on here. Teamwork makes the dream work.