Kelly Greene, Greene Publishing, Inc.
After the wreck that occurred, on Tuesday, Aug. 16, a team of local supporters organized several fundraising events and social media sites, to show their love and support for the Jessica Mullinax family. In addition to showing the family they were not alone during this heart-wrenching tragedy, “Team Jessi” was incorporated to help the family with the overwhelming medical expenses accrued since Mullinax's admission to Tallahassee Memorial Hospital, this past August.
“Team Jessi” advocates pooled resources and created a one-day series of events which took place on Saturday, Oct. 8. The success from this day is due to many participants who played a crucial roles both behind the scenes and during the event, through their contributions made of both money and time.
Southern Grace Gifts, Penelope's Boutique, Norris Cafe and Stacy and Company assisted with the donations, registration and advertising. Amy Carroll took pictures throughout the day of the event. Jim Bob's printing donated flyers, designed by Kristen Parks of Southern Grace, to advertise the event.
Here are some success stories from the epic events that took place on Saturday, Oct. 8:
A fun run, organized by Gina Plain, was the first event that took place, on Saturday, Oct. 8 and was a huge success with over 100 participants.
Following the fun run, a lunch organized by Michelle Lewis was provided by the team on the courthouse lawn consisting of BBQ plates which included several donations from local businesses and the community.
Then there was a silent auction, organized by Mikayla Ragans, with a huge turn-out; donations pouring in from friends, family and local businesses. This occurred at First United Methodist Church (FUMC) who provided the fellowship hall and sanctuary.
Immediately following the silent auction, supporters gathered in the sanctuary for a time of prayer and fellowship. Jessica Norwood sang Amazing Grace and Annette Johnson delivered a powerful speech of encouragement that sent a message to trust and obey the Lord, no matter what you are going through. During their time in the sanctuary, everyone wrote notes to Mullinax, they signed big heart cut-outs for her nurses, and everyone signed a sea turtle painting that was donated by Kristen Parks now hanging in her hospital room. Madison County High School cheerleaders played a huge part by assisting with the clean-up.
Additionally, the GoFundMe account set-up by Lynne Brown has been shared over 700 times, with a surprise donor from Belgium. The team has also sold several t-shirts with Mullinax's favorite scripture that reads Be still and know that I am God (Exodus 14:14).
Brown shared an interesting story concerning a man who was fleeing from Hurricane Matthew and had slept in his car for two nights during his time in Madison. He saw a flyer and handed them five dollars. She pointed out that no matter the size of the donation it is the heart behind it and the love and support seen during this time has been remarkable.
Another interesting story, was the donation given by the MCHS cheerleaders and by Shane Mercer from their winning at the Boot Hill stadium drawing, on Friday, Oct 14. They each donated 50 percent of their winnings to the Mullinax cause.
“Team Jessi” started out with a goal of $20,000 and they were at $16,000, which is a huge amount collected for the one-day series of events, until Paul Martinelli, who is the president of the International John Maxwell team and a great friend/mentor of Brown's, donated $4,000 that allowed them to reach their goal.
Wendy Silvernell, Mullinax's mother, and Brown would like to give a big shout out to the nurses and doctors at TMH, who have treated Mullinax like a princess during her time in the hospital.
Special thanks are in order for the generosity, love and support contributed to Jessica Mullinax and her family by friends, family and individuals from the community of Madison, in which her family is grateful. This story sends an inspirational message to those that may face or are going through a tragic time in their lives. Mullinax is touching the hearts of people all around the world. According to Brown, Mullinax will be transitioning to rehab soon and would ask the community to continue to support the family through prayer.