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Family more than quadruples pillow donations to BCH

Last year, oldest sibling 17-year-old John Shuster was intent on providing a new pillow for every new child arriving at Kennedy Home in Kinston. Shuster’s “Pillow Project” set a goal of 50. The campaign provided 89 new standard pillows.

Joined by his younger brother 16-year-old Jacob this year, the duo determined to exceed last year’s total. The boys are the grandsons of Mills Home alumna Carolyn Tharrington of Smithfield.

The boys, who attend Raleigh Charter High School, made the “Pillow Project” their service commitment project. The duo sent letters to family and friends asking for their support. Purchased pillows were dropped off at their home and cash and checks arrived by mail. The response was good. So good, they realized the “Pillow Project” could provide pillows to all four of Baptist Children’s Homes (BCH) campuses plus the two wilderness camps.

Kennedy Home, Broyhill Home and Mills Home received 100 pillows each, Odum Home 76, Cameron Boys Camp 32, and Camp Duncan for Girls 24 for a grand total of 432 pillows.

“It was amazing,” John said. “I had hoped it would grow this year, but the generosity of all those who helped was so great. It went way beyond what we even imagined.”

The brothers’ sister 14-year-old Jessica contributed by creating “warm fuzzies” as thank you gifts for donors. She looks forward to helping next year as the three siblings strive to collect even more pillows than this year’s “Pillow Project” total.

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