Three church members, Judy McClellan, Blanch Milhorn and Janie Lippo had begun crafting the items before Shelby’s passing, but they decided donating them to the hospital’s Neonatal Intensive Care Unit in her honor would be best.
Cards attached to 28 crocheted baby blankets and booties donated to Niswonger Children’s Hospital on Friday each were decorated with a gold butterfly, the same image that adorns Shelby Ann McCamy’s tombstone.
She would have turned 11 Friday.
The materials were hand-stitched and prayed over by members of the Piney Flats Presbyterian Church where she was a member and had expressed an interest in the hobby. Three church members, Judy McClellan, Blanch Milhorn and Janie Lippo had begun crafting the items before Shelby’s passing, but they decided donating them to the hospital’s Neonatal Intensive Care Unit in her honor would be best. Heather McCamy, Shelby’s older sister also was on hand.
The Bluff City girl died July 18 from injuries when storm debris hit the vehicle she was traveling in during an evening storm. It was a freak accident; a one in a million. Her mother, Tammy McCamy, still wearing a sling from injuries she suffered while driving the vehicle, sat quietly inside the hospital admiring the womens’ handiwork with Shelby’s great aunt, Barbara Shell.
“She would be tickled,” Tammy McCamy said about her daughter. “I think’s it’s a very nice gesture. To help other people -- that was her way. This is a great keepsake for anybody. She had been learning how to crochet. She was very energetic. She wanted to be the one doing something for someone else.”
McCamy’s vehicle was traveling northbound on Bristol Highway when she slowed down considerably due to the weather. A metal roof system from a shed that belonged to Torbett Plant Farm was blown into the road and struck the 2012 Volkswagen Jetta in the passenger side. Shelby, who was sitting in the back seat, and her mother, who had been driving, were transported to the Johnson City Medical Center where Shelby died from injuries suffered in the accident -- an accident that was unavoidable on the driver’s behalf, according to police.
Shelby’s mother and oldest daughter shed a few tears Friday, but they were in good company.
“She would have been 11 today, and the members of the church wanted to do this in her honor,” said Judy McClellan. “We had been planning to bring these to the hospital, but we thought this would be a nice way to honor Shelby.
The ladies were given a brief tour of the hospital. And when they walked away from the foyer where the gifts were formally given and received, they did so arm in arm.