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Schwartzwalders raise money, awareness of spina bifida and music therapy

by on November 1, 2012
The Schwartzwalders used this favorite photo of Kaley on the T-shirts they provided to those who walked in her memory.

(Story by Rachel Hammer)

WESTERVILLE, Ohio — Kaley Schwartzwalder always wanted to do something to benefit Nationwide Children’s Hospital’s Music Therapy program. In late September, Kaley’s family and friends were able to make that dream come true.

On Saturday, September 29, 42 members of “Team Kaley” participated in the Central Ohio Spina Bifida Alliance’s (SBA) Walk, Run and Roll 5K near Westerville. Team members’ registration fee and some donations — in all, about $700 — went to SBA. At the same time, team members also raised about $1,000 for the music therapy program.

Kaley, daughter of AEP retiree Mike and Elaine Schwartzwalder, was born with spina bifida. Kaley died this past July at age 28.

Mom Elaine told ThisWeek Community News, “. . . Kaley received treatment at Children’s throughout her life, and she loved the music program, which would send a musician to her room at her request to play guitar and sing with her . . . Kaley, throughout her life, loved music.”

Because of her love of music and in appreciation for the program, “Kaley wanted to do something that would benefit for Children’s Hospital Music Therapy,” said her father.

Raising money through the SBA event “…was a good format for us,” Schwartzwalder said. “Given the limited time we had to put this together, I thought we did pretty well.” Schwartzwalder noted that they continue to receive contributions in Kaley’s memory.

“She left a legacy,” he said. “She was extremely well liked and people wanted to help.”

Schwartzwalder noted that this was the first year the family participated in the event. But it won’t be the last. The family plans to walk again next year. Schwartzwalder noted, however, that the family may at some time coordinate their own fundraising event specifically for Children’s Hospital’s Music Therapy program.

Schwartzwalder retired from Engineering, Projects & Field Services’ Quality Assurance Services group in 2010.

One Comment
  1. dewey1965 permalink

    Sorry for your loss, she has a beautiful smile.

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