Jennifer Hensel & Jeremy Richman – Avielle’s parents
It took us weeks before we read William Lavin’s letter to us. There was too much grief to bear. Even reading letters of condolence was impossible.
When we had the strength, we started to read the letters we received from around the nation and world. Among the many letters was one in particular, from William Lavin and the New Jersey State Firefighters Mutual Benevolent Association Foundation, Inc. This letter sang to our spirits. A generous act of kindness was being offered, an offer that would benefit so very many children – a gift to a community ravaged by Hurricane Sandy, a gift for children, a playground in the honor of our daughter, Avielle, was being offered.
Children are the foundation of our country, our country’s FUTURE. Children need safe, clean, and beautiful outdoor spaces in which to climb, run, jump, laugh, and explore. My husband and I thank you Mr. Lavin and the New Jersey State Firefighters Mutual Benevolent Association Foundation, Inc. for creating these spaces so important to the community.
When you and your children are on the playground dedicated to Avielle, look for fairies and their homes, laugh openly, climb a tree, play tag, blow dandelion seeds to the wind, hop on one leg for one full minute, swing higher than the clouds, fly a kite, hide behind a boulder, eat apples and blueberries, be a monkey on the bars, and see the beautiful polka dots, stripes, and squiggles that make up the landscape of a child’s heart.