Adoption brightens Henry house

Melanie Wakefield, Troy InVoice Reporter

Upon meeting Donna in her advisory class one year, Mrs. Katie Henry knew there was something special about her. Henry took an interest in Donna. They got along great, and when Donna became a junior, she enrolled in Mrs. Henry’s Leadership class.  “I first got to know her when she was 14, her freshman year,” Henry said.

In Donna’s previous home, her mom was often sick and Donna was her caretaker. During the time she was in the Advisory class, Donna told Henry what life was like at home. Henry mentioned that this was one of the reasons that she “kept tabs on her.”

One night Donna’s mom became extremely ill. “Her mom had a medical emergency and was not expected to make it through the night,” Henry recalled. “The Chaplain at the hospital called us and asked if we could provide help for her,” since Donna “didn’t have family in the area to stay with.”

Mrs. Henry and her family didn’t think twice. “I called my husband and said, ‘We’re getting a new member of the family!’ and he just went, ‘Alright!’”

Things moved fast that day Henry said, “She moved in that day and has been with us ever since.” The Henry children helped clean out the office for Donna’s new room and they automatically grew into family. “My oldest daughter and her became quickly very close,” Henry recalled with a smile.

Usually in an adoption there are pros and cons. Typically, the cons are the long process, or perhaps a member of the original family has a hard time accepting a new member into the family. However, with Mrs. Henry, her family, and Donna, this wasn’t the case. Henry was adamant, “The pros… she is a role-model for my other kids, who have looked up to her and learned so much about perseverance and courage.” As for the negative, Henry said, “NONE!” Mrs. Henry, like many others, happiness comes in the form of giving to others. From a can of food to help the Auburn Food Bank, missionary work at home and abroad, peer tutoring by the N.H.S., to adopting a student in need, many students and staff know the happiness that comes from giving to those in need.