Cobb Life

JUN 2019

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24 COBB LIFE | JUNE 2019 Suer GIRLS of the W HEN CRABAPPLE MIDDLE SCHOOL'S Media Center Specialist Kate Kowalske of east Cobb found out her sister's 4-year-old daughter was diagnosed with Langerhans Cell Histiocytosis (or LCH), a rare cancer that a„ects the body's immune system, she felt hopeless. Presley Grace Casey, who lives in Chicago, will be receiving chemotherapy for 12 months. Kowalske then remembered a book she had read at the Roswell middle school, where she and her sister attended 13 years ago. "Sadako and the Žousand Paper Cranes" is about a Japanese girl who su„ered from leukemia because of the atomic bomb dropped on Hiroshima. In the book, she tries to fold 1,000 cranes to cure herself of her illness. Cranes are holy symbols in Japan and are o"en said to live for 1000 years. Folding these cranes and presenting them to a person who is sick is said to heal them and grant them a long life. "Že thought of folding 1,000 cranes is daunting, but I started," said Kowalske. "It was our tech David Lee who mentioned to me about getting the school involved and, a"er that, it took o„." P A P E R W I N G S O F I N S P I R A T I O N Crabapple Middle School comes together to create paper cranes for a special girl in need PHOTOS AND STORY BY TRAN SMITH Že cranes started coming in immediately. Že CMS family from sta„ to students wanted to help. "Even if they had never done origami before, they gave it a shot," added Kowalske. "Teachers were folding when they had a few spare minutes. Students folded during homeroom and lunch. One girl brought in 40 she had folded overnight. When students turned in cranes, they asked how my niece was doing. Žey even wrote notes of encouragement on the cranes. It was overwhelming." Kowalske reached her goal of 1,000 in just four days! "Sometimes, people think that grief only happens when someone dies, but when I heard about my niece, I began to grieve," said Kowalske. "I began folding at šrst because I wanted to do it for her, but then it started helping me. Once you start folding, it becomes like prayer. You pour your worries in those cranes and hope it helps. It gave me a place to put my grief, my worries, my love. When my entire CMS family turned out to help, that feeling only intensišed." Že cranes made their way to Presley in Chicago in late April. Kowalske hopes to do this project for someone else next year. SCHOOL MAY BE OUT, BUT THAT DOESN'T MEAN LOCAL TEACHERS, STUDENTS AND PARENTS ARE TAKING A BREAK FROM HELPING OTHERS IN THE COMMUNITY. HERE ARE TWO STORIES SURE TO TUG AT THE HEARTSTRINGS ABOUT SOME OF THOSE VERY SPECIAL PEOPLE.

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