Over the past few months, the Downingtown MOMS Club has posted on the Chesco Moms page some pleas for support. Well, we’d like to thank this amazing community for coming through! This past Saturday was a special day for the club. After 8 months of active fund raising, we proudly dedicated a bench to Mya Rose Anderson-Brophy on the Struble Trail in Downingtown.
|Some members of the Downingtown MOMS Club|
For those unfamiliar with the story, in April 2011, just before Mya turned 19 months, her mom, Emily, took Mya to the pediatrician after noticing her left eye was swollen and droopy. They were immediately sent to DuPont Children’s Hospital in Wilmington, DE where different x-rays and scans were done. The following day, Mya was diagnosed with Stage 4 Neuroblastoma. She was eventually transferred to CHOP for treatment (chemotherapy, radiation, and surgeries). Mya fought an amazing fight against this cancer for 14 months, even going into remission at one point, until her body just couldn’t take anymore. The tumors continued spreading and unfortunately there was nothing left for the doctors to do. Mya passed away in July 2012, just 2 months before her 3rd birthday. Mya was such a sweet, precocious, and smart child who is greatly missed by a lot of people.
While the club mourned the loss of precious Mya, a committee was formed to raise money to purchase a bench on Struble Trail in Mya’s favorite spot (near the dam). It started with Kids Day in the Park (Bell Tavern). We raffled off baskets of prizes donated by club members and local businesses and we sold bracelets that our children made. We raised $292. Next was our Preschool Open House at United Sports Training Center. We had 17 preschools attend the event and we made $136. In February, we had a Family Swim Night for the community at ACAC in West Chester where we raised $928 – and met our fundraising goal. Also, along the way we received donations from people in the Downingtown community who were touched by Mya’s story. Even though we met our goal, we had one last event and that was our Spirit Night at Chick-Fil-A of Ashbridge Square in April. This event raised $470.
|Essential helping hands|
All in all, our events raised $2,026.00 total. The bench itself cost $1,234.90 and supplies were about $150. Over $600 will be donated to CHOP for pediatric cancer in honor of Mya.
As we like to say, never underestimate a small group of mothers or the power of the Downingtown community! We also have to give praise and show our appreciation to Owen and Joe from Chester County Parks and Recreation for their efforts, support, and help. And a big shout out to Brian Betz and his father Thom. Brian is a sophomore at Bishop Shanahan High School and installed the bench as part of his Eagle Scout project. We also appreciated the mayor, Josh Maxwell, for coming out to the dedication ceremony and speaking on behalf of the community. The Mayor declared June 1st as “Mya’s Day” in Downingtown!
|The Mayor of Downingtown|
The bench on Struble Trail is a great way for us all to remember Mya and to keep her memory alive in this loving community. We hope that the next time you walk along the trail, you will sit on her bench and think of the short but impacting life that Mya Rose had on us all.