Eight year old Ellie Pruitt passed away suddenly this past February from complications of the autoimmune disease, Juvenile Arthritis.
Though Ellie was only 8 years old, her impact has been incalculable. In her short life, she helped raise thousands of dollars and broadened awareness for the Juvenile Arthritis Foundation through her family’s fundraisers at her elementary school in the Atlanta area.
Just after her tragic passing, Ellie’s “Kindness List” went viral, reaching all around the state of Georgia, as shops and restaurants changed their marquee signs in remembrance, elementary schools and churches honored her memory, along with social media and news outlets all sharing her message to “Have Fun & Love Always.”
This past Tuesday, to celebrate what would have been Ellie’s 9th birthday, October 20th, 2020, was named, “Kindness Day” by her town. To observe this special holiday, we wore her favorite color, yellow and celebrated her birthday by doing intentional acts of kindness.💛
Many on social media changed their profile pictures to yellow, while others shared kindness-centered memes, hashtagging their posts with #ElliesDay.
One woman cashed in her spare coins to leave a generous tip for her waitress on Tuesday. Another woman handed out gift cards to children for ice cream- YUM! And another young lady shared a photo of herself at a blood bank, donating in Ellie’s honor!
Legacy Ridge Assisted Living in Woodstock, GA organized a special balloon release to commemorate Kindness Day. Even though Covid19 prevents the residents from seeing their loved ones inside the facility, quarantine didn’t stop them from enjoying the beautiful fall day! They look lovely posing with their yellow smiling balloons. One resident loved Ellie’s list so much, she pledged to abide by the 5th rule: “Love Always.”
There were many more noteworthy acts to mention, but the people who don’t have access to social media are the ones who truly did the most in remembrance of #ElliesDay…the kids! Hundreds of kids from all around the area rocked their yellow, and quietly acted on intentional kindnesses to help others and give to their fellow students, teachers and family members in celebration of Ellie Pruitt’s heavenly birthday.
I dare say that the youngest participants will be the most influenced by this event, learning the values of love and kindness, to carry with them throughout their lives.
At the end of the day, Ellie’s family shared a post on social media to thank everyone who participated in the celebration of their late daughter’s birthday. They were clearly touched by how many individuals and businesses participated.
The below message was shared by Ellie’s mother, Heather Pruitt:
“I am blown away by what a huge success #Elliesday was. I started the day trying to keep a list of all the acts of kindness that I was hearing about but by about 8 am I had already lost track! I know that Ellie was smiling down on each one of these kind acts throughout the day and had the best birthday ever partying with Jesus! Thank you to everyone for making this a day for us to look forward to and not be afraid of. It was full of all kinds of emotions but we certainly felt all the love!💛”
This is Ellie’s loving, living legacy which she left with us to remind us all how we should treat one another.
Thank you, dear Ellie💛 We all need this reminder right now!💛
#KindnessDay #AlwaysLove #ElliesDay
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