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Hawkins student motivated by death of 'Papaw' to raise funds for Heart Association

Jeff Bobo • Feb 23, 2020 at 1:30 PM

MOUNT CARMEL — Lily Wright was especially motivated to raise money for the American Heart Association this year.

Around Christmastime, the Mount Carmel Elementary School second-grader lost her grandfather to heart disease.

Every year, MCES hosts the Kids Heart Challenge, during which students gather donations for the AHA through heart-healthy activities.

In the past, the event was limited to jumping rope, but for the Feb. 12 fundraiser, the school’s P.E. teacher, Melissa Markham, added other options.

Every MCES student from pre-K through fourth grade participated in 12 heart-healthy activities that included basketball, “Ninja Warrior” style activities, cardio fitness, and different types of jumping, including jump rope.

“I did it because some people have heart conditions”

However, only 40 students opted to participate in the AHA fundraiser.

Lily wanted to participate to honor her grandfather, and her dad gave her a little extra motivation.

“I did it because some people have heart conditions, and my Papaw Jim Johnson had a heart condition, and he died from that,” Lily told the Times News Friday. “I got the money from several people on Facebook and at my mom’s work. My dad said if I raised a certain amount of money, which was $800, he would bring it up to $1,000. I raised $1,100.”

A total of $2,901 raised for the AHA

The second-highest fundraiser was first-grader Kasin Nichols, who brought in $400.30.

Overall, students raised a total of $2,901 for the AHA.

The other 38 students who participated in the Kids Heart Challenge fundraiser included: Abram Kilgore, Brantly Carter, Kinley Sluss, Olivia Cassel, Violet Ritz, Adam McDavid, Averee Thompson, Owen Roberts, Waylon Skeen, Eliana Cook, Keegan Sluss, Jillian Lewis, Blake Bowery, Olivia Norris, Trey Lawson, Noah Hall, Avery Phillips, Rylee Mailloux, Lillie Whisnant, Zoey Lavinder, Jaz Boykin, Audriana Hawks, Joci Ragle, Marrisa Vaughn, Caleb Slagle, Danni Guinn, Phedre Kilgore, Caleb Benton, Abby Ragle, Clinton Hall, Cooper Parsons, Kylie Slagle, Carson Cook, Isabella Goode, Turner Winstead, Kinsley Cassidy, Charlotte Mullins, and Sarah McDavid.

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