JACKSON, Miss.- C Spire called it the “Christmas Wish Initiative” and it was all about granting big wishes for some very special customers. C Spire asked individuals earlier this month to share their personal stories and explain why their Christmas wish, no matter how big or small, should be granted by the company.
The response was overwhelming. In just six days, hundreds of individuals submitted entries for the C Spire Christmas Wish. No purchase was necessary to participate. The three winning entries all involved inspiring, yet simple stories of family, faith, hope and love in the midst of daunting personal, health and financial challenges that represent some of the best examples of the indomitable human spirit.
“As a company that gets its inspiration from our customers, we were amazed by the incredible stories of everyday hard-working people courageously and valiantly striving to help their families and the people they love,” said Jim Richmond, vice president of Corporate Communications for C Spire. “When we say that we work for our customers – that extends to serving our communities and the people in them. During the holidays, especially, it’s a good time to stop and appreciate the inspiring stories of our customers and the privilege to participate in bringing joy in even this small way.”
Mary Benton nominated her daughter, 33-year-old Elizabeth Brumbaugh, who is battling a rare form of Leukemia. Elizabeth works as a barista at the Island View Casino Coffee shop. She said she worries about how she will pay her medical bills on a daily basis.
C Spire’s gift to her was paying off the deductible on her medical insurance.
“I had no way of knowing how I was going to pay for the bills. My Mom certainly couldn’t help because of her circumstances. I don’t want to ask for help from anybody, but I appreciate C Spire stepping up in this way,” said Brumbaugh.
Next on the list of wishes to grant was Essence Anthony of Southaven. Essence was nominated by her boss. She is a young woman working hard to support herself and her family, that includes her two younger sisters and a niece that live with her.
“I’m not on any public assistance and my family means everything to me,” Anthony said. “I work hard and take care of them before myself. The circumstances make it just about impossible to get by. C Spire’s help is an answer to prayer and means the world to me. It’s the difference between resting at night and crying myself to sleep.”
Essence was awarded $10,000 from C Spire as part of the Christmas Wish Initiative.
Last, but certainly not least is the Greenwood family of Madison. Parents Shay and Roosevelt said they have seen their fair share of trials, but that their faith and the assurance of Joshua 1:9 “Have I not commanded you, be strong and courageous.” Roosevelt, the head of the household, suffers from stage four metastatic prostate cancer.
A family who has home-schooled all of their children ranging in age from 5 to 20, the strength and courage the couple have displayed during the cancer battle has inspired friends and co-workers. “Their humility, simple grace and faith in the face of adversity and this huge, life-altering challenge is amazing,” said family friend Chelsey Mcmillen, who submitted the wish on behalf of the Greenwoods.
“God has granted me the ability to continue to do the things I love, which is supporting my wife and children and continuing to be involved in their lives,” Roosevelt Greenwood said. “Time away with the people I love is precious to me – so C Spire doing something like this for me and my family is truly a blessing.”
They were awarded a $10,000 dream trip to any location of their choice.
C Spire was also able to make a $8,000 donation to Make-A-Wish due to customer participation.
To watch a full video of the surprises click here.