Big heroes come in small packagesPublished 3:57pm Tuesday, September 11, 2012
BY LORETTA GILLESPIE / FOR THE RECORD
Lindsey Jones of Gurley was diagnosed with rhabdomyosarcoma, a rare form of cancer, one month before her fourth birthday.
The tumor put pressure on her optic nerve, causing permanent blindness. For a year, little Lindsey was treated at Children’s Hospital in Birmingham where she underwent radiation and chemo.
For the past eleven years, Lindsey has been in remission. Today, she is a very happy 16-year-old, who participates in dance, plays several instruments, is in the marching band at Madison County High School, and loves to sing.
“Lindsey is very active in the church, in school activities, and is the honorary youth chairman for Relay for Life,” said her mother Teresa Jones.
Two years ago, Lindsey also had the privilege and honor of being chosen as the champion child of Alabama for Children’s Hospital and the Children’s Miracle Network.
She frequently makes personal appearances for telethons raising money for Children’s Hospital and the Children’s Miracle Network.
“I have had the privilege and honor of meeting the President, Ms. America, our Senators, Dr. Oz, Carrie Underwood, Brad Paisley, and Nick Saban,” said Lindsey. “Roll Tide Roll.”
Lindsey is involved in the gifted program, the National Junior Honor Society, Future Business Leaders of America, Future Christian Athletes and Scholar’s Bowl Team.
A recipient of the Life Inspiration Award in Birmingham, Lindsey brings hope to others. She has also done local events, helping to raise money for the American Cancer Society and Children’s Hospital.
She also won the Prudential Spirit Award for the state of Alabama, and is a recipient of The Hero of Hope Award, which was formally awarded in Nashville, Tenn.
“Heroes of Hope is a way to spread your story and give encouragement to those who have been touched by the tragedy of cancer,” Lindsey said. “It helps people with cancer feel that they are not alone in the world.”
Lindsey has compassion for helping others and is an inspiration to those fortunate enough to meet her. She has never used her blindness as a crutch, but instead as a tool in bringing awareness to others of what the words courage, strength and determination mean.
“I can not describe in words just what part of my journey has stood out the most, Lindsey said. “But if I had to choose, I would say that it would be the many friends that I have met along the way.”