December Volunteer of the Month – Sue Byrne
Meet our volunteers! Each month, we highlight a stand-out volunteer (or two) and how they support families. For December, meet Sue Bryne, whose volunteer group Timmys Angels has helped countless families over the past five years.
- How long have you volunteered with us?
Our group – Timmys Angels – started volunteering with the organization in 2015.
- Where do you usually volunteer, and what do you typically do?
We volunteer at the Ronald McDonald House near Advocate Children’s Hospital in Oak Lawn. We started Timmys Angels as a nonprofit in memory of our son. He passed away at the age of 11 after being hit by a car. Timmy passed at Advocate Hospital, and he was able to become an organ donor. After that, we wanted to pay it forward in our communities because he did the ultimate ‘pay it forward’ by donating his organs.We started Timmys Angels and first provided support by donating “Timmy Bears” (or comfort bears) to families saying at the House near Advocate Children’s. From there we started participating in Meals from the Heart – we volunteer to make lunch for families at the House at least once a month.
- What keeps you coming back as a volunteer?
Timmys Angels has a great team and we all love going to the House to cook. We love everything about it: the beautiful kitchen, the volunteers, and especially the staff! They are the best.
- What is your favorite memory or experience from volunteering?
Our favorite memory is when the House staff asked our group to cook for the 10-year anniversary! It was a lot of work, but it was so rewarding.Our best experience as RMHC-CNI volunteers is getting to meet some of the families. Their courage and strength are so inspiring.
- What does it mean to you to donate your time to RMHC-CNI?
Ronald McDonald House has helped us to get out of ourselves and into each other. We, as a team, love it there.
Anne Czarnecki, the program director of RMH near Advocate Children’s Hospital, added, “Sue Byrne epitomizes the definition of an angel. She helps families and children in their darkest hour, in honor of her son, Timmy. Sue and her Timmys Angels team not only bring comfort to the families at Ronald McDonald House, but all over the Oak Lawn-Hometown communities through coat drives, backpack builds, and Christmas giving. If Sue sees a need, she activates her network to fill it. Not only that, but she does so with the warmest smile, and the coziest embrace.
The House near Advocate Children’s, and the community surrounding it, is so lucky to have this angel watching over us. When Sue and her fellow volunteers cook lunch or dinner, our families know it will be not only delicious, but reminiscent of a family party or other get together, which includes love, laughter, and friendship.
How lucky we are to be a part of her magic.”
Thank you Sue and Timmys Angels for your continued dedication and commitment to helping families get better together!