Grand Blanc Senior Uses Her Crown to Help Young Heart Patients in Michigan
Rylie Dewley is one very special young lady. A senior at Grand Blanc High School not only is she an acclaimed majorette, the organizer of Grand Blanc's Adopt a Senior program, and Miss Michigan's Outstanding Teem. As if that isn't enough, she is also on a quest to make sure young cardiac patients in Michigan have a little extra love.
Dewley, who will be heading to the University of Alabama in the fall, was crowned Miss Michigan's Outstanding Teen last June. She won a $1,000 academic scholarship with her title and went on to compete in Orland for the title of Miss America’s Outstanding Teen. As part of her platform, Dewley continued with a program she created called the Start Heart Smart program, as a way to help young cardiac patients cope with their stay in the hospital.
Dewley, who herself was a cardiac patient as a young child diagnosed with leaky valves and mitral insufficiency, created special packages that are full of things to keep kids busy in the hospital. The items included coloring books, fuzzy socks, beanie babies, and even a special note from Dewley herself.
"Just to let the kids know that I'm thinking of them and to make them feel comforted because a hospital is not a place that you can normally feel comfortable. So these boxes are a way to do that".
Dewley has donated these "heartfelt" boxes to both the University of Michigan Motts Children's Hospital and Hurley Hospital in Flint. She recently made a delivery of the special gifts to the University of Michigan Health at Sparrow Children’s Center.
Learn more about Rylie Dewley's Start Heart Smart program here.