Greeted with hugs, gifts, and so much love…

Father smiles with daughter playing on slide

A Family story in their own words.

By: Cayley Pritt

Thank you to the Roanoke VA Ronald McDonald House!! On February 25th we drove from Athens West Virginia to Roanoke Virginia for a routine procedure at the Carilion Roanoke Memorial Hospital. Isabella had to be sedated to have an MRI to check her optic nerves just as a precaution after we noticed a tiny vision abnormality, and we were done and ready to head back home when we got the phone call that completely turned our world upside down. We were in utter shock to hear the optometrist say “Isabella’s MRI showed a large mass in her brain, pushing on her spinal cord”. We were incredibly heartbroken and distraught. Sobbing, shaking, almost unable to breath and stand. There was no way we would have been able to drive the long trip back home in that condition. Or think with a level mind to make arrangements at a hotel and go shopping for all of the necessary supplies so we could stay near by the hospital as we anxiously awaited to hear what our next step would be. So being welcomed with open arms to the Ronald McDonald House right down the street was exactly what we needed in that moment! The arrangements were all taken care of for us in a matter of minutes. We were greeted with hugs, gifts and so much love. There was no way we could have survived those nightmarish first 3 days without the kindness and support of of those incredible angels who work there and cared for us. We appreciate the roof Ronald McDonald House put over our heads, the necessary basic supplies they equipped us with and the warm meals they filled our bellies with, all at no cost to us!! They made those incredibly difficult first few days of our new reality A LOT easier on us. And then again when we were guests there for 27 more days throughout all of Isabella’s operations. During that duration we actually slept at the hospital with Isabella however we still used the Ronald McDonald House a lot for showers (our pediatric intensive care unit did not have a bathroom), we also used their laundry room completely stocked with all the free supplies we needed to clean our clothes, and occasionally we grabbed some of the free snacks they had available too! The Ronald McDonald House is a HUGE blessing to families like ours who have loved ones in a Hospital and want/need to stay near by them. There are more than 365 Ronald McDonald Houses throughout the United States and world. And they depend on donations to fund them!! So please please donate to Ronald McDonald House Charities every opportunity you can!!! It’s super easy to slip some money into the donation box when you’re at McDonalds or even collect the tabs off of pop cans and donate them to a Ronald McDonald House. Where they then recycle them and use that money to fund everything to keep them up and running. Thank you from the bottom of our hearts Roanoke VA Ronald McDonald House.