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Terri Schiavo's 40th birthday Wednesday
WND ^ | 11-30-03 | Sarah Foster

Posted on 11/29/2003 11:13:22 PM PST by JustPiper

Friends and supporters of disabled woman send greetings, plan party Terri Schindler-Schiavo turns 40 Wednesday, and plans are in the works for a celebration to honor the brain-disabled woman who suffered six days of court-ordered starvation last month when the feeding tube that sustains her was removed at the behest of her husband, Michael Schiavo. Her life was saved only when Florida Gov. Jeb Bush and the state Legislature stepped in and ordered the feeding tube restored.

''We're making plans,'' said Pamela Hennessey, spokesperson for Terri's parents, Robert and Mary Schindler. ''It'll happen – that is, if Terri lives till Wednesday without something happening to her first. But people should realize she's still in danger. A judge could simply order her feeding tube removed and the whole thing would start over.''

Besides a party, people from around the country are finding ways to mark the occasion and let Terri know they're on her side – usually with e-mails and letters.

Birthday cards are among the few things Terri is allowed to see in her room at the Hospice of the Florida Sun Coast, in Pinellas Park, where she has been for over three years. Although Schiavo will not permit flowers in her room, her parents and siblings are permitted to take her cards and small gifts.

''When people learned her birthday was coming up, they just started sending notes and cards and e-mails,'' Hennessey told WorldNetDaily. These have been arriving daily at the headquarters of the Terri Schindler-Schiavo Foundation in St. Petersburg.

Hennessey reports over 500 e-mails have come to the family's website, with more arriving every day – prayers, words of encouragement, poems and even a couple of jokes. They were submitted with the promise that Terri's family would read each one to her.

Students at the Margaret K. Lewis School for Exceptional Children in Panama City, Fla., reached out to Terri by making made dozens of birthday cards for her. Many show the outline of a hand with the thumb, index finger and ''pinky'' extended – that's how to say ''I love you'' in American Sign Language.

Joshua Farver and his teacher Susan Perry display the card they made to be sent to Terri Schindler-Schiavo (Photo: WMBB-TV, Panama City, Fla.

Some of the children needed help from assistants to draw their cards and write their names and ''Happy Birthday,'' but they understand very well about Terri and her plight. Many of them are fed by tube the same way she is.

''So many of these children are children with feeding tubes,'' said Susan Perry, a teacher at the school, when interviewed by WMBB News 13, the ABC TV channel in Panama City. ''They are human beings just like Terri. They want her to understand they know what she's going through, and if their feeding tubes were taken away from them they would go hungry. They just want to wish her a very happy birthday,'' said Perry.

Adult clients at St. Andrew Bay Center in Lynn Haven, near Panama City, also made birthday cards for Terri, and these were added to those made by the youngsters at MKL School. The center is a private, nonprofit agency that teaches practical skills to developmentally retarded people so they can live independently. Over 100 cards were collected from the school and the center and hand-delivered Saturday to the Schindlers who shared them with Terri.

A world of faces

Hennessey said a local activist, Cheryl Ford, has come up with the idea of creating a collage of faces, ''absolutely one of the sweetest ideas I've ever heard.''

In an e-mail Ford asks those who can't be at the celebration on Dec. 3, to e-mail a picture of ''yourself with your family, your family pet – whatever'' to

She will print these out and assemble them into a collage with the heading: ''To our Terri, From the World of Faces who Love you!'' and present it to Terri's parents on their daughter's birthday.

''I know, I know!'' Ford wrote. ''This is a hurried last minute request, and I do apologize. I just thought about this idea when I was counting sheep last night.'' [Thursday].

She said the photos must be scanned and sent no later than Sunday as she'll need time to make the collage.

''Remember to smile pretty,'' she said.

From the Schindlers

WorldNetDaily has reported the Schindlers have fought their son-in-law, Michael Schiavo, in the state court system for six years over his determination to starve his wife to death and his claim that it's what Terri would have wanted. The courts have consistently ruled that because he is her legal guardian, as well as her husband, he has the right to order removal of his wife's feeding tube. Terri left no written directive, but Schiavo swears she told him in casual conversations that she would never want to be kept alive by ''artificial means.''

The Schindlers do not believe their daughter made such end-of-life statements and dispute a judge's ruling that she is in a ''persistent vegetative state'' from which she will never recover. They say Terri responds to them and could be rehabilitated if given the therapy that Schiavo has refused to provide.

Robert and Mary Schindler would like everyone who cares about Terri to join them in wishing her a happy birthday. Here are some suggestions of small gifts and other items from a list posted on the website.

You can send a card or a note to us at the foundation. We will deliver them all to Terri.

If you've placed a light in your window for Terri, please send us a picture.

Terri adores animals. If you have a picture of your favorite pet, feel free to send it along. (It's been years since she's seen a cat or dog, though there is a ''Pets-for-Patients'' program at the Hospice.)

Terri enjoys music. Piano music, John Denver, Journey and Wham! are some of her favorites. Since she has a CD player in her room, a CD would make a great birthday gift.

Terri enjoys lotions and nice-smelling things for her skin.

If you'd like to send a personal message, tape record your own message and we'll play it for her.

So many people have already sent a prayer to Terri on our Share a Prayer page. We read these to her as often as we can. Be sure to include yours.

Michael Schiavo does not allow her to receive physical therapy, but ''stress balls'' are great for relieving the contractures in her hands. Cards and gifts should be sent to the Terri Schindler-Schiavo Foundation, 4615 Gulf Blvd., 103-104, St. Petersburg, Fla., 33706.

Mary Schindler says she is overwhelmed and grateful for the ongoing effort to save her daughter.

''It helps to know that there are so many people who recognize that Terri is merely a disabled woman who deserves to be given a chance,'' she says. ''We want desperately to continue to care for her and to get her the therapy that she needs.''

Information, including court filings, are posted on the Schindler family website.

TOPICS: Announcements; News/Current Events; US: Florida
KEYWORDS: birthday; schiavo; schindler; terrischiavo; terrisfight

Joshua Farver and his teacher Susan Perry display the card they made to be sent to Terri Schindler-Schiavo (Photo: WMBB-TV, Panama City, Fla.

''So many of these children are children with feeding tubes. …They want [Terri] to understand they know what she's going through, and if their feeding tubes were taken away from them they would go hungry. They just want to wish her a very happy birthday.''

Susan Perry Teacher, Margaret K. Lewis School Panama City, Fla.

1 posted on 11/29/2003 11:13:23 PM PST by JustPiper
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To: NYer
FYI reminder ping ;)
2 posted on 11/29/2003 11:13:50 PM PST by JustPiper (Teach the Children to fight Liberalism ! They will be voting in 2008 !!!)
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To: JustPiper

How sad. What's wrong with her husband?
3 posted on 11/29/2003 11:31:11 PM PST by cyborg (mutt-american)
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To: cyborg
"How sad. What's wrong with her husband?"

I wonder if that creepy piece of garbage will drop by to wish her a Happy Birthday. Or will he be visiting Scott Peterson to pick up more pointers?
4 posted on 11/30/2003 12:25:25 AM PST by laweeks (I)
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To: cyborg
What's wrong with her husband?

Where do we begin? He tried to kill her, she didn't die. He tried to legally kill her four more times and she wouldn't die. The last try Governor Jeb Bush said "No, she couldn't die!!!

5 posted on 11/30/2003 1:02:46 AM PST by JustPiper (Teach the Children to fight Liberalism ! They will be voting in 2008 !!!)
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To: JustPiper; sweetliberty; nicmarlo; msmagoo; KDubRN; floriduh voter; Orlando; supercat; ...
Terri's Army ping.

WorldNetDaily has truly been just to Terri and her family - a news site worthy of your support.

6 posted on 11/30/2003 8:52:26 AM PST by FatherOfLiberty (Never attribute to malice that which is adequately explained by stupidity.)
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To: FatherOfLiberty
Volunteers --Please READ!

A GREAT idea was suggested by Pat Anderson and it was that I make assignments. So here goes the Volunteer assignments.

Please respond ASAP to me via email to let me know you are in receipt of this email and can do your assignment.
Again respond ASAP please..or I will assume you cannot do a table and will assign your table to another volunteer.

People maybe working on Wednesday, so we need to officially consider the party officially begins between 4 -5 PM .

The "Happy Birthday Terri" circle of friends song!
All join hands to sing Happy Birthday Terri
---5:30PM ------6:30 PM -------7:30 PM

*Birthday Tables need to be set with enough distance between so the traffic flow pattern is smooth and there is enough room between them for people to move around.

*Please be considerate of all attending and set tables in a designated area so there is a sense of party organization.

I think it is best if the party area is set away from where the vigilers pray, so not to disturb those in prayer.
And also in respect for those who are there to support Terri,
but do not wish to pray.
It is IMPORTANT NOT to offend anyone, or turn any supporter away!

* Name Tags-- Please wear a Volunteer name tag.

* There's plenty to do for any regular vigiler who wishes to help but who has not been assigned a specific table.
Please feel free to help at all tables! Volunteers will need breaks.

* I will hopefully arrive early. However, if any of you arrive before me...please be sure to set the tables to the side of Vigil prayer area and in an organized flow pattern.

Cheryl F. & Pam H.
813-695-0870 or

Have balloons and a donations can at each!

TABLE # 1 ----
Volunteer PAM Henessey. - TerrisFight.Org Table
Please volunteer at this table.. bringing table #1 and setting it up.
Table 1-- should include /brochures/ribbons/literature ***Nicely decorated Donations Can!

Volunteer/s (Angela Hillhouse & The Schindler's) - Please locate Bob & Mary Schindler and ask them to PLEASE create a Family Table.
Pictures of Terri- her favorite music playing - things Terri made... etc..etc.
*Place Nicely decorated "donations can"

Table # 3 Beverage Table-
Volunteer, Angela Hillhouse & Jackie ? - please volunteer at the beverage table.
Please set up a beverage table with:
coolers/ice/cups/ napkins/ drinks.
*** Place Nicely decorated donations cans at this table also

Table # 4 --- Cake Table
Volunteer, Jackie Miller
PLEASE Contact Angie STUTZ619 @
She has volunteered to pay for as many sheet cakes as we need.
I suggest 4 LARGE sheet cakes. Sam's makes nice one for a reasonable price if you order soon.
Please bring a large enough table to handle cakes.
We will need plates, napkins, & forks at this table
***Place Nicely decorated "donations can" at this table also.

Table # 5 " CHILDREN/ Balloon Table "
At this table it would be nice to have things set up for children who are visiting Terri. Perhaps ribbons with little lolli-pops stuck through them.
***Place Nicely decorated "donations can" at this table also.

Table # 6 Light a Candle & Guest Book Table
Volunteer, Cheryl Ford
Fight4Terri/ Votive Table/InternetTable
Votives and guest book for people who wish to light a candle for Terri. Special cyber poems/ cyber flowers/ picture collage sent from Internet people.
***Place Nicely decorated "donations can" at this table also.

Volunteer, KAREN WARD-
***Place Nicely decorated "donations can" at this table also.


AREA Party Decorators - Folks who are sitting vigil please decorate trees and area with bows and balloons. Lavender is preferred because Pat says it is Terri's favorite color.

Contact me now.....

7 posted on 11/30/2003 10:35:04 AM PST by KDubRN
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To: JustPiper
I am 100% on Terri's side.

But I'm troubled that little kids with feeding tubes are being made too aware of this case--at school. My children are aware of the case but they have no special reason to be afraid that this could happen to them--except in the most hypothetical, abstract way. If one of them was on a feeding tube, I would have a problem with a teacher who brought this issue up without my participation.

I don't know, just throwing this out there because it bothers me that this was done at a school with children for whom being starved to death this way seems a real threat. This kind of intimate, fearful scenario should be something to be handled at home by parents.

It's like those "how it feels to be excluded" mind game exercises a teacher played on us when I was in junior high. Exclude all the blue-eyed kids on Monday, snub all the brown-eyed kids on Tuesday, call the green-eyed kids mean names till they cry on Wednesday, so you can feel the way Blacks do in this country and become adequately sensitive. It's not right and they shouldn't be doing it.

Okay, bash me...I'm probably wrong.
8 posted on 11/30/2003 6:55:32 PM PST by ChemistCat (Hang in there, Terri. Absorb. Take in. Live. Heal.)
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To: ChemistCat
I homeschool and unless the children are older like mine, I would still ask them if they were up to hearing it. Most kids do not want to know the news. So, I empathize with you and would absolutely want to confront this teacher!
9 posted on 11/30/2003 7:20:20 PM PST by JustPiper (Teach the Children to fight Liberalism ! They will be voting in 2008 !!!)
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To: ChemistCat
One day, when one of my sons was in kindergarten, he asked me if I were going to have any more birthdays. I told him that I sure hoped so. He got really quiet, and was that way for a few days. Very unusually quiet and pensive. Finally, on about the third day, he came to me in tears and asked me not to have anymore birthdays. I took him on my lap and asked him why. It turns out that they were having a unit on growing, and the teacher had said that every year you are bigger on your birthday than the year before. What she forgot to tell them was that eventually you stop growing. He thought I was going to keep growing and get to be a giant and stomp on little children. It scared him. He was ok once I explained that I had stopped growing, just as he would someday; so it was ok for me to keep having birthdays.

Teachers need to be very careful of how they present things to children because they have such diverse ways in which they see and understand the world. It can be a very scary place for them. Terri's story could be frightening or at the least unsettling even for kids who are not on feeding tubes if they are not told about it in a very sensitive and careful way. Generally, parents are the best ones to do so.
10 posted on 11/30/2003 7:46:12 PM PST by KeyTapper
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To: ChemistCat
I also want to wish Terri a Happy and Healthy Birthday, and to wish her recovery and safety.

I've been a silent lurker, but no less concerned for her. My prayers are with you, Terri.
11 posted on 11/30/2003 7:53:10 PM PST by KeyTapper
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