On Nov. 8, several Clinton businesses and residents were able to make the day of a young girl by helping her celebrate Halloween after she missed trick or treating due to illness.
Katy Sypher-Piper said her four-year-old daughter Ava, who was diagnosed with asthma and an immunodeficiency, was ill on Halloween and couldn’t go trick or treating.
Sypher-Piper decided that with the cold weather and Ava’s recent illness, rescheduling Halloween was the right move. Instead, she posted in the All Things Clinton Facebook group asking for the name of someone who worked in Town Hall. “I was hoping for just three offices in a row to let her come in,” Sypher-Piper said.
Instead, her post received enough attention that Ava was able to go to multiple locations the morning of Nov. 8 morning to trick or treat. Sypher-Piper estimates that about 30 different people gave Ava and her brother Andy candy. Ava went as the Princess Merida from the Disney movie Brave, while Andy went as a veterinarian.
In addition to the Town Hall, the family was able to go to the Clinton Fire Department and several locations in Old Saybrook.
“The craziest part of this is that nobody had to do anything,” Sypher-Piper said. “There was so much love and support from the community.”
Sypher-Piper said the visit to the Fire Department in particular was something that Ava enjoyed, and said that members of the department played with Ava while she had to take a break to get some treatment at the fire station. “It’s not a typical childhood, but it’s a fun one,” Sypher-Piper said.
For Sypher-Piper, it was another opportunity for her to see how much people in the community would go out of the way to help one of their own.
“I spend a lot of time making things up to Ava,” said Sypher-Piper, who described a recent trip to the doctors at which she had to tell Ava to pretend she was on a rocket ship while she sat to get X-rays.
With all those hospital trips, the trick-or-treating was a welcome change.
“It was nice to do something with nothing behind it,” Sypher-Piper said.
In August, Ava was selected to take a trip to Seattle as part of the Make-A-Wish Foundation. Ava’s wish was to meet YouTube personality Blippi. Sypher-Piper said the experience and support she received during that time helped “open my heart” to the community.
“I think there’s a lot of arguments in town,” said Sypher-Piper, referring to the political climate during election season. “And it’s pretty [great] people came together for something like this.”