Amazing Grace Weigman

“Amazing Grace,” She Needs Your Help

This is an update to an earlier article on the Sarasota Post about Amazing Grace!  Thank you for your support.

My name is Sande Caplin and I reside in Sarasota, Florida.  My company is Sande Caplin & Associates.  We are website designers and our team also “builds futures.”  

I heard about “Amazing Grace” Weigman from the awesome folks at The Blue Rooster Restaurant in Sarasota.  One of their servers, Isabelle Hublot, went to a garage sale that the Weigman family have monthly to raise funds for Grace’s care.  Isabelle spoke to her bosses at the Blue Rooster and they agreed to have a fundraiser a couple of weeks ago.

Grace is a 7 year old girl who has numerous diagnoses, including thoracic insufficiency syndrome as well as Robinow syndrome.  Thoracic insufficiency syndrome is a condition where several deformities of the chest, spine and ribs prevent normal breathing, lung growth and lung development.  A VEPTR device has been placed by Dr. Campbell at the Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia to aide Grace in her growth.  There are no doctors or facilities in the state of Florida offering treatment for these conditions.  The VEPTR device is a curved metal rod that is attached to a child’s ribs near the spine using hooks on both ends.  The VEPTR helps the spine and separates the ribs so the lungs can grow and expand as the child grows.  Grace has to fly to the Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia in a special air ambulance every four months.

Grace was born at 34 weeks.  The doctors did not think she would live through the night.  If she did survive most likely she would not be able to walk or talk and would have to be fed through a tube.  She has lots of abnormalities.  Grace is now seven years old.  She has had stomach surgery, ear surgery, 2 brain surgeries and 14 spinal surgeries.  She has 13 ribs on one side and 11 on the other.  She has 19 doctors at All Children’s Hospital in Tampa and 6 doctors in Philadelphia.

Grace is a love and a very special little girl.    When I came to visit her a couple of weeks ago for the first time she asked me to “sit down next to her.”   I asked her “what is your favorite food?”  Her answer, “French fries.”  (most of the time she is fed through a feeding tube.  My answer as the tears streamed down my face, “hamburgers!”

Grace is a fighter.  Three times a year her mom and grandmother take her to Phladelphia Childrens Center for spinal surgery.    There are many out of pocket expenses that are not covered through medical coverage.  Expenses  such as lodging (when Ronald McDonald House is not available), car rental, food, certain medications and  other expenses involved when they travel to Philadelphia for the surgeries. .  That is the reason that the family holds monthly garage sales to raise $2,000. for the trip.

The goal- Raise $4,000. so that the next 2 trips to Philadelphia for surgery are covered and the family does not have to continue to scrape for money.  I have lots of friends out there.  If 400 people donate $10. each we reach our goal.  If 300 people donate $13. each we reach our goal.  If 250 folks donate $16. each, we reach our goal….you get the picture!!!

Please watch the video.  If you have healthy kids, you are blessed.  Give generously, the Weigman’s are fabulous people who need your help….and, little “Amazing Grace” is awesome and your generous donation will be a great benefit to her.

Thanks, Isabelle & Sande


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Amazing Grace Weigman, George Weigman, Holly Weigman, Isablle Hublot

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