PARSIPPANY — Little Emma Wyman has lots of friends that she’s never even met. In fact this happy, beautiful one-year-old Parsippany girl has so many friends, that if she were old enough to realize it, she would be overwhelmed by the sheer number of supporters that are coming to her aid.
That’s because Emma is undergoing treatment at the Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia for a rare type of sarcoma. When her mother’s friend and colleague Jacqueline Forte, also a teacher in the Parsippany schools, learned about the situation, she went right to work and set up a web page called “YouCaring” to inform the community and request donations. (Click here). Never did she imagine that the site would already have generated more than $113,000.00.
Mrs. Forte and fellow teacher Stephanie Staples, leaders of “Emma’s Angels” as the support organizers are known, knew that once apprised of the situation, their colleagues in the Parsippany-Troy Hills schools would rally to the cause. They have not been disappointed. The entire 750-member Parsippany-Troy Hills Education Association (PTHEA), along with support staff and some administrators, have dedicated Friday, October 16 as “Emma Gold Out Day”. The halls and classrooms will be a blaze of color as teachers and students in all 14 buildings will be wearing gold (the color associated with childhood cancer awareness), with some wearing specially created t-shirts, the proceeds of which will raise the “YouCaring” totals even more. The date was chosen to coincide with Emma’s first birthday, Sunday, October 18, when Mrs. Forte plans to present her with her first birthday present, a sampling of the financial generosity of the Parsippany community.
Emma’s parents, AJ and Lindsey (Kmit) Wyman, who are lifelong residents of Parsippany, learned of Emma’s tumor in late May and have taken her to Philadelphia where she is being treated by internationally-recognized pediatric oncologists.
Unfortunately, during her first moments of chemotherapy, Emma suffered a stroke and needed to be resuscitated by nurses. While she has been responding quite well to her subsequent rounds of chemotherapy, Emma will need extensive physical and occupational therapy to regain full use of the left side of her body. In addition, there is no telling the extent of the damage that was caused to her brain from the lack of oxygen she experienced during those horrific moments of unconsciousness.
Emma’s father, AJ Wyman has begun to take time off from his job as a corrections officer, while her mother Lindsey is taking time off from teaching sixth grade social studies at Brooklawn Middle School. During this life-altering time, the family will incur costs from medical to travel expenses, while keeping up with their regular monthly bills for their cars, home, etc.
“Emma’s Angels” recognize the ongoing financial hardship and are asking the community for even the smallest donation, which they say will go a long way to aid baby Emma and her loving parents during this incredibly difficult time.
To see Emma’s story, click here.