Small toys, big heart

By Joan Hadac

Your correspondent in Clearing and Garfield Ridge

(708) 496-0265 • [email protected]

Hi everyone. I hope you are doing well and enjoying the summer so far. What have you been up to?

joanhadac

Joan Hadac

I really enjoy writing this column, and one of the biggest reasons is meeting people from the community I might never get a chance to meet otherwise. In this case it was Linda Kane and Marilyn Uldrych (nee Kane). They told me the story of Linda’s niece and Marilyn’s 9-year-old daughter, Lucy.

Lucy Uldrych is a little girl with big ideas and the talent and drive to accomplish what she sets out to do. Heading into fourth grade in August, Lucy recently decided she wanted to sell fidgets, little toys kids get to handle and play with. She asked for her mother’s help, and Marilyn gladly gave it by buying the fidgets. Marilyn also sat down with Lucy and allowed her to use her Facebook page to sell the toys.

Lucy’s brother, Rudy, 6, who just finished kindergarten, got into the act by helping pack the fidgets.

“Lucy gave a cute little spiel on her mom’s Facebook page to sell the fidgets. She could be on QVC,” Linda said. “She’s doing amazing.”

“She’s selling a lot, a ton,” Marilyn added.

But instead of keeping the profits for herself, Lucy decided she was going to honor a friend, Gigi, now 14, who battled brain cancer. When Gigi was getting treatment at Lurie Children’s Hospital, one thing she enjoyed was getting toys to play with, including fidgets.

Gigi’s mom, Edna, who Marilyn said is “close enough to call family,” told Lucy and Marilyn that May was Pediatric Brain Cancer Awareness Month; and for every fidget Lucy sold, Edna would donate the same amount to Lurie Children’s Hospital. She gave Lucy the money to buy the fidgets. Lucy is taking some of her profits and buying fidgets for the kids at the hospital as well.

“This was Lucy all the way. I am very happy and proud of her,” Marilyn said.

All that’s left is to work out the details with officials over at Lurie Children’s Hospital to safely deliver the fidgets while adhering to pandemic regulations, Marilyn explained.

“I’m so proud of Lucy. This was so generous of her,” said Linda.

Lucy, your generosity is something to behold. I hope more kids and adults follow your lead by helping others in need of comfort in a trying time. Congratulations to you and thank you.

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Gigi and Rudy show a few fidget toys. –Supplied photo

Lucy is another member of the Kane family through her mom. The Kanes are a familiar family in Garfield Ridge. Linda, the oldest through Marilyn, the youngest of eight, grew up on Mayfield in Garfield Ridge. Linda, Marilyn and a brother Patrick still live in Garfield Ridge. Their dad, Jack Kane, a member of the Chicago Fire Department for 35 years, passed away in 2007.

Their mom, Judy Kane, has lived in Garfield Ridge since 1968. In addition to raising her children, Judy was a Chicago Police Department crossing guard, safely guiding children to and from St. Daniel the Prophet School.

Judy celebrated a milestone on June 21. She turned 80 years old and the family celebrated together, all eight siblings, their spouses and Judy’s grandchildren.

Happy Birthday, Judy. I hope you enjoyed your celebration.

Dunworth hosts fundraiser and honors nurses

The folks over at the Dunworth Foundation for the Performing Arts will be hosting a fundraiser in August, so I want you to save the date. The fundraiser will take place from 11 a.m. to 9 p.m. Saturday, Aug. 21 at Jason’s Deli, 6260 W. 95th St., Oak Lawn.

They are also honoring nurses who were on the front lines at Advocate Christ Medical Center by promoting the book, Through Our Eyes, which includes 40 accounts about what nurses saw and experienced during the worst of the pandemic.

For more information, visit dunworthfoundation.org.