This is an emotional and triumphant story of a mother and a daughter. Together, they have overcome obstacles that initially seemed insurmountable. This was accomplished through determination, persistence, love, and an unwavering belief in God's goodness and grace.
At age forty-two, Carol decided to adopt a special needs Russian orphan as a single mother. She found Kelsey in a Russian orphanage when she was eleven months old, weighing less than fourteen pounds. Alone, sick, starving, her head had been shaved due to lice. The doctors did not know if she would ever walk or talk.
Carol adopted Kelsey and brought her home to Georgia. Their subsequent life journey is a remarkable story of how they overcame every obstacle placed in their path. Despite these dramatic and sometimes brutal life events, they have remained positive and focused on the future. These events include, but are not limited to, medical and developmental issues, school bullying incidents, the bigotry of low expectations for special education students, lack of awareness and understanding of children with developmental disabilities, lack of access to extracurricular activities (including Special Olympics competitions), financial exploitation, animal cruelty, near-death experiences, and the refusal to recognize the developmentally disabled as human beings with the same rights as every other American citizen.
Kelsey is currently a nationally recognized advocate, community volunteer, beauty queen, author, and athlete. She has been diagnosed with having autism, intellectual disabilities, and Rubenstein-Taybi syndrome. Kelsey believes that individuals with disabilities can achieve great things in life and make a tremendous positive difference in the lives of others.
Kelsey and Carol continue to write books, facilitate workshops, and give motivational presentations. They are working toward establishing their own foundation in the next couple of years that will support individuals with disabilities and children who are in crisis situations.More info →