You have probably never heard of Elyse Wickenheiser. She is an 8-year old girl living in Carleton, Michigan. On her eighth birthday, test results indicated she had leukemia. That was certainly not a happy birthday gift. As a result, she is scheduled to have two years of chemotherapy and has had to drop out of school, which leaves her suddenly lonely without her friends and teachers. To combat the loneliness, she has requested cards from all over the United States. Elyse, or Elly as most people call her, now waits for the daily mail with eager anticipation.
One the middle school teacher at Whispering Palms School is Ms. JoAnn. Her home is just a few miles from Carleton, Michigan, where Elly lives. Ms. JoAnn heard about Elly and brought the story to her middle school classroom at Whispering Palms School. The students signed a card for Ellie and sent her some mementos from Saipan. They acquired a Tribes T-shirt, hat, and stickers as gifts and an introduction to our beautiful island. Tribes is a locally owned shop that mixes island culture and urban street culture, blending the two into a unique presence on the island through clothing. Sharing the Tribes clothing with Elly will allow her to wear a piece of the island and bring awareness of the location and culture of Saipan to people in her community.
Elly and her two older sisters read each card aloud. When they’re finished, they put a dot on a map to show which state or town the card was mailed from. She has received cards from all over the United States, and even from Spain and Australia.
The Whispering Palms students have added Saipan to Elly’s map. If you would like to know more about supporting Elly, you can contact Ms. JoAnn at Whispering Palms School, a private school located on Navy Hill for students aged 4-14. The phone number is 323-7451. (PR)