Emma and Maggie Make a Real Dream Team

Maggie Seymour presents Emma with her medal.

Seymour followed Emma into the St. Mary's library to flip through several of the books.

Last month in Holland, Mass., Team Hoyt VB runner Maggie Seymour and St. Mary’s Home resident Emma crossed the finish line in a triumphant second place victory.

Recently, Seymour, a captain in the Marines, reunited with Emma at the Home to present her with the medal they had received and a photo of the two at the race.

Seymour said that during the race, Emma kept reaching up through the sun screen on her jogging stroller to wave to the cheering crowd.

Team Hoyt VB is a Virginia Beach-based organization associated with Team Hoyt, which gives people with disabilities the opportunity to play an active role in their community. Team Hoyt VB runners have participated in several races, including St. Mary’s 5K.

By Sydney Palese, Marketing Communications Intern

Oh, the Places Laniya Will Go!

Laniya clapping with the crowd.

Family, friends and staff gathered on Tuesday afternoon to two-year-old Laniya’s graduation from the Infant and Toddler program. Laniya proudly sat in her high chair, donning a Dr. Seuss-themed mortar board and holding a diploma that fit perfectly in her tiny hands. Whenever the crowd clapped, she clapped too.

Since her arrival at St. Mary’s Home in August, Laniya has developed in tremendous ways. She has been surpassing goals faster than her mother and Early Intervention Technician Stephanie Bailey could set for her. As a result of much time and a consistent classroom routine, Laniya is now reaching crucial milestones, including walking and imitating others.

St. Mary’s Infant and Toddler Program focuses on children in the Home up to two years of age. The program uses detailed lesson plans to build motor, communication and social skills. The program also emphasizes getting the children out into the community and encourages play dates with other children who do not have disabilities.

The theme of the graduation was Dr. Seuss' "Oh, the Places You'll Go!"

Though Laniya has graduated from the Infant and Toddler Program, she will be continuing her education at St. Mary’s. Laniya will start school in the fall through the Southeastern Cooperative Education Programs. Just like every child and young adult at St. Mary’s, she will receive an Individualized Education Program; hers will focus on improving communication skills.

Laniya, like other students, will enjoy a summer vacation before she hits the books in the fall. Her mother and Bailey hope to line up some fun activities, including going to the beach, the park and the aquarium.

To see photos from the graduation, please visit our FaceBook page.

By: Sydney Palese, Marketing Communications Intern