By Elaine Owen, Editor
Sixty-two children enter a Children’s Miracle Network (CMN) Hospital for treatment every minute. Whether they suffer from common childhood afflictions like asthma and broken bones, or fight bigger challenges like birth defects or cancer, Children’s Miracle Network Hospitals provide comfort, treatment and hope to millions of sick kids. In fact, Children’s Miracle Network Hospitals treat one in 10 children in North America each year.
For Fannin County, the nearest CMN Hospital is Erlanger, just over 74 miles West on US- 64W/US-74 W. Travel time is approximately one hour and 30 minutes.
The time and distance is not a big factor when other things are considered. Things like the help you find when you get there. Knowing that one local business in Fannin County, Dairy Queen, sets one day each year, Miracle Treat Day, to raise money to help sick kids. For 13 years, Joe and Cilla Cipolla have donated thousands of dollars, $1 for each Blizzard sold the fourth Thursday in July. But this year was different.
This year, on Miracle Treat Day, the Cipollas donated $2 for every Blizzard sold to meet their goal of raising $5,000 to help local kids get medical treatment when they need it most.
Joe Cipolla said, “We were so close to $5,000 that I increased our contribution on the 631 Blizzards sold Thursday from $1.00 per Blizzard to $2.00 per Blizzard. That brought our total including our Balloon Sales and what we had already collected from our canisters to $5,373.73. That amount includes a $600.00 check from the Veterans Associations of Fannin County, a check from The Terminator, our pest control company and a check from Brotherhood Oil, another local business that is active in the community. Several other business owners and community groups made cash contributions at the contribution table that was manned by our Veterans groups volunteers.”
Raising money for Children’s Hospital is personal for the Cipollas and Dairy Queen. THEY HELP. And kids are important to them. Veterans are too. And they show that support in every event of the Veteran community. They found out Thursday that VFW Commander Paul Hunter had a personal relationship with CMN when one of his kids and one of his grandkids spent extended periods at Erlanger when they were infants.
Hunter, along with Commander Richard Crosley, spent the entire day under the Veterans Tent set up to collect money for Children’s Miracle Network Hospitals.
Since 1984, DQ and Children’s Miracle Network Hospitals have partnered together to provide life-saving treatments to kids from across the United States and Canada. Since that time, more than $125 million has been raised to fund critical treatments and healthcare services, pediatric medical equipment, and charitable care.
Joe Cipolla said, “The Blue Ridge Dairy Queen is proud to be part of this partnership.”