Heather had made a promise to Zack: to make sure that Kevin Clash, the Muppetteer behind Elmo, knew how important he was to Zack and to everyday life in their house. She promised to have Elmo say Zack’s name.
After Zack died, Heather learned about the Being Elmo film: the film about Clash and his journey as Elmo. One day, Heather made a post on the Being Elmo Facebook page.† She told the team what Elmo had meant to her Zack and to her entire family after losing him. And within a day, Constance Marks, the director and produce of the Being Elmo film, got in touch with Heather directly and vowed to help the Zack’s Dream Room project in any way possible — and to pass the story along to Kevin.
A few months later, Heather got a phone call from the VP of Communications at Sesame Street, who told Heather that Kevin Clash personally wanted to help the Elmo’s Dream Room project. Ellen offered to organize a donation of Elmo furniture and other items for the room.
And the magic continues. Next week, the team is holding† a special screening of Being Elmo in Toronto as a fundraiser for the project — with a special screening of a personal video created by Kevin Clash. In this video, Clash makes Zack’s wish come true: he says Zack’s name.
Grief can destroy you. It can turn you into a shell of your former self and cause you to forget what it feels like to be happy. For Heather and Paul and their sons, they have turned their grief into joy and hope for other children in Zack’s memory. May we all have such grace in our own lives.
Photo credit: Heather Hamilton. Used with Permission.
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