Former Patient Gives Back to His “St. Mary’s Family” During Holiday Season

James Spaight Donates Gifts to St. Mary’s Volunteers, and Distributes Toys and Holiday Presents for Patients and Families

For the last few years, James Spaight found a way to give back to those he accredits for the wonderful medical care he received as a child during his stay at St. Mary’s Hospital for Children in Bayside, Queens.

As the holidays were nearing, James could think of no better way to thank those he considers his “St. Mary’s family,” than to donate 65 gift bags filled with Avon products for each of the 65 volunteers who dedicate their time to care for patients at St. Mary’s, one of the region’s premiere providers of post-acute pediatric care for children with special needs.

James was 5-years old when he was admitted to St. Mary’s; battling a severe respiratory condition. He was cared for by St. Mary’s renowned team of nurses, doctors, therapists, and volunteers, who all helped him overcome his challenges and gradually improve his condition. “I hold St. Mary’s close to my heart because of the wonderful work they did with me and continue to do for all the numerous children they help today,” remarked James.

James had the privilege of touring the hospital several years ago and witnessed firsthand the innovative therapies and dynamic programs he himself once received “I also had the honor of meeting and talking to some of the volunteers that show so much love and compassion for the children. Seeing that, made me feel compelled to do something for them,” said James.

Every year, James checks in to get an updated count on the number of volunteers at St. Mary’s and makes sure he has enough gift bags for each of them.

James’s attachment to the hospital also motivated him to donate toys and clothes to St. Mary’s kids and their families whom he relates to and understands the difficulties they are facing. St. Mary’s kids are battling complex medical and life-limiting conditions due to serious illness, injury, or complications of premature birth. While some are wheelchair bound, for others, it is a challenge to eat, talk, or move objects. A few years back St. Mary’s started a program where St. Mary’s kids have an opportunity to choose presents to give to their parents and siblings during the holidays. James also donated gifts to this program so patients could have a variety of choices to choose from.

James is always coming up with new ways to stay involved with St. Mary’s and continues to support St. Mary’s children and families through his generosity.