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Dorothy Sousley Memorial Fund

Dorothy SousleyThe Dorothy Sousley Memorial Fund was created in 2013 specifically to provide assistance to single parents who are caring for a child diagnosed with a congenital heart defect. Donations to this special fund will specifically be available to these single parents.

Dorothy passed away on November 8, 2012 at the age of 86. She had 13 grandchildren and 33 great-grandchildren at the time of her death. One of her great-grandchildren was Jamie. Dorothy was always close to all her family and always wanted to take care of her family. She was often at the births of her great-grandchildren and these children would have to be forced out of her hands. Dorothy could always be found sitting with her grandchildren and great grandchildren even up to her passing. Children brought so much joy to her life and helping others was her gifting. During the time of Jamie's short life, Dorothy always did what she could to help the Hannah's as they dealt with Jamie's heart condition. After Jamie's passing, Dorothy became one of the top individual donors each year to Jamie's Heart Foundation and always told us she wished she could do more. She was a regular attendee to our annual gala events even when travelling was difficult for her health. She simply had to be there.

Tim Hannah, the President of Jamie's Heart Foundation and grandson of Dorothy, announced at the 2013 gala dinner about the formation of this special memorial fund in her honor. Tim shared a story about his grandmother that was shared in her eulogy at her memorial service.

Eulogy excerpt by Lester Sousley (Dorothy's son):

"Divorced with no job and no support from her ex-husband, she struggled to make ends meet. I personally do not remember going without food or clothing at that time, but she remembered differently. She stated that one night there was absolutely nothing in the cupboards. Faced with sending her kids to bed without a supper, she went outside to ponder her situation. She stated she walked around the house and when she returned to the front porch, the Merkle boy stood there with a bag of groceries. He said: "My mom says you should take this." She did. We had supper that night. She never forgot the kindness and developed a lifelong love and respect for Margaret Merkle. She last visited Margaret three days before Margaret herself succumbed to cancer. Mom cried as she described the visit and her depth of love for that generous neighbor and friend."

We know that any family encounters tough financial times while caring for an ill child and Jamie's Heart Foundation was created to provide assistance for all families. This special fund honors Dorothy's generous spirit and memory as Jamie's great-grandmother. We are comforted knowing that Dorothy is taking care of Jamie once again.

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