Local Family Receives $1,000 from YourWay Furniture and Townsquare Media Tuscaloosa’s ‘Heartwarming Holidays’ [PHOTOS, VIDEO]
The "Heartwarming Holidays" finale was held Friday, December 19, at YourWay Furniture in Tuscaloosa, and thanks to YourWay and our participating sponsors we were able to make one special family's Christmas merry and bright!
We began accepting nominations for families to receive a Heartwarming Holiday in November, and we selected one family each weekday December 1-5 and December 8-12. We received hundreds of entries, and when it was time to select our finale family, one story truly touched our hearts.
Crystal and Jake West of Berry, Alabama were nominated to receive a Heartwarming Holiday by Eva Stansell. Eva told us that the West family experienced profound heartache this year; they lost their daughter Macyie Grace Traweek on October 10, 2014--just a few days before Macyie's seventh birthday. Eva also told us that Jake promised his daughters, six-year-old Emma and ten-year-old McKenzie, that he would do all he could to make sure that their family had the best Christmas ever; however, Jake was recently laid off from his job.
We all had to fight back tears when we first read the West family's story, and we knew then that we wanted to do whatever we could to help them this holiday season.
With Eva's assistance, we put our plan in action--we wanted to surprise the Wests at YourWay! I went out with our Traffic Director, Tiffany, to get the girls some extra-special presents. We went to Sephora and Claire's; we bought McKenzie and Emma purses and stockings and filled them with necklaces, diaries, hair bows, bracelets, and candy. I had so much fun shopping for their surprises, and I couldn't wait to meet them!
Eva had the Wests come to YourWay--they were told that she needed help picking out some new furniture. They had no idea what was waiting for them...
When we arrived, we teamed up with John Little and Danny Reed of YourWay Furniture to surprise the Wests. Greg Thomas told Crystal and Jake that we were all moved by their story and wanted to help them have a merry Christmas--we gave the girls their gifts and told the family they'd have Christmas dinner on us, and then it was time for the big reveal...
John Little and Danny Reed of YourWay Furniture helped us present the Wests with $1,000! The family was overwhelmed and cried tears of joy--and we cried right along with them. Seeing the smiles on their faces and sensing the joy in their hearts was wonderful! We're so thankful for the big hearts of John and Danny; they helped make this bit of Christmas magic possible!
Check out our gallery below--we've shared some of our favorite moments from Friday's finale.
We were also able to capture the surprise on video as Greg Thomas tells the family what they were receiving.
The most important part of the holiday season is giving to others, and that belief is the foundation of "Heartwarming Holidays." We want to thank YourWay Furniture for their help in spreading Christmas Cheer in West Alabama, and we want to thank our participating sponsors for their part in making "Heartwarming Holidays" possible. Thank you to everyone who submitted a nomination, too. We hope you all have the happiest of holidays and a Very Merry Christmas!