The myFace staff had the honor of meeting the Graf family last December: Joe Sr., Nancy, Andreah and Joe Jr. To say they left an impression on us is an understatement.
They came to the myFace offices to present us with a generous donation, specifically from Joe Jr. and his sister, Andreah, who both have a level of empathy and maturity well beyond their years.
Andreah, now a freshman in college, was born with hemifacial microsomia, Goldenhar syndrome and single-sided deafness. She has been a patient of Dr. David A. Staffenberg at The myFace Center for Craniofacial Care for many years; she and her family are grateful for the exceptional quality of care she received. Because of her personal connection to having a facial difference, she formed her own foundation to help raise money and awareness for others like herself. Her goal is to help them achieve “acceptance, greater self-esteem” and feel “empowered to achieve their dreams.”
It was Andreah who told her brother, Joe Jr. about myFace and how impressed she was with the medical and psychosocial care we provide so that patients, like herself, can live full and productive lives.
Joe Jr. was taken by her commitment and passion for our cause and decided that he too would offer his support. It is important to note that Joe Jr. is not only a sophomore at NYU with a 3.8 GPA, but also a professional NASCAR race driver with 70+ victories under his belt.
In addition to the $20,000 Andreah helped raise for myFace through her foundation, Joe Jr. thought it would be a “fantastic idea” to donate $10,000 of his race winnings from the 2018 season.
He also arranged a special, once-in-a-lifetime event for a group of our myFace Stars at Pocono Raceway in July where they met Joe Jr., toured the garage, got into the pitbox on the track and witnessed a real live car race for the very first time. It was a day they will never forget.
Joe Jr. speaks of how much of an impact the book and movie, Wonder, had on him. He understands that the emotional challenges that children like Auggie face can be heartbreaking.