Thursday, May 19, 2016
Today was a VERY special day at the Paramus Rotary Club meeting as we were visited by our club’s Gift of Life Child from 5 years ago. Then at age 9 months old Ashlee Tan came to us from the Philippines to receive her “gift of life” thanks to heart surgery sponsored by the club. Her host family at that time was Paramus Rotary Club’s Lloyd Astmann and his wife Helen. Ashlee is now a happy and healthy 5 ½ year old. 
It is VERY RARE that a Gift of Life child revisits the club and family that hosted, supported, and sponsored their life saving heart surgery. It took many months to arrange this visit with almost endless hurtles and issues with the exit visas for Ashlee and her family. …but it happened today. 
To quote Lloyd… “While the Gift of Life surgery saved the life of Ashlee, our meeting her and her family and hosted them changed Helen and my life forever”. Helen and Lloyd had keep in contact with Ashlee over the past 5 years and made it possible for them to return for this visit. 
Pictured are (from L to R) Albert Tan (dad), Ashlee Tan (G of L Child), Joy Dela Pena (mom), Misha Tan (little sister), Helen Astmann and Lloyd Ashman (hosts), and Paramus Rotary Club President Jay Leone.
Pictured with the Tan family is Paramus Rotary Club President 2013-2014 Jennifer Padolina who (as a fellow Filipino) was very much involved with helping Ashlee and her family during their initial visit to the USA/Paramus five years ago. 
Here is today’s “greeter” Doris Spano and our NEW “Welcome to the ParamusRotary Club” sign.