Carey used to drive by the Ronald McDonald House in her hometown of Tulsa, Oklahoma all the time, but never really thought of the impact a Ronald McDonald House could have on her family. In May of 2016 that all changed when her son Drake was diagnosed with brain cancer.
“We really weren’t sure what to think when we were traveling to Memphis,” Carey said. “There is so much information coming at you at a time like that; it is a little overwhelming.”
Once they got settled in, they started to see what truly made a Ronald McDonald House special.
“I always tell people, ‘if you have to be away from home, this is a good place to be,’” she said. “When we get to go home for little breaks, I miss it here. I miss all of the bright colors and all of the little things that the staff provides for us. Most of all, I miss the support of the other families. They are always so comforting and really understand what you are going through.”
Carey wasn’t the only person in her family moved by her time at Ronald McDonald House of Memphis.
“My sister came to visit us when we first arrived and she was so touched by the hospitality and kindness she saw here that she went home and signed up to be a volunteer at her local Ronald McDonald House. She has already cooked two dinners for the families there,” she said. “On top of that, my cousin’s children have started setting up a lemonade stand on the weekends and donating the profits to the House here in Memphis.”
“If this experience has taught me anything, it’s that there is still a lot of goodness left in this world,” she said.