Moriah Richardson spent many Christmases in the hospital, but it was still her favorite holiday, her mother Sharday recalled.
The family would do anything to make the season special for the girl, who was diagnosed with a rare form of brain cancer when she was just 2 years old.
Moriah died in 2013, two weeks before her fifth birthday. In his honor, the family formed the Forever Moriah Foundation, which grants celebratory and birthday party wishes for terminally ill children in the Fredericksburg region, especially at Christmas.
“Moriah loved Christmas, so that’s a time when our organization tries to do as much as possible to help families in this battle,” Sharday Richardson said. “We spend a lot of time in the hospital during the holidays, so we know how it feels.”
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This year, the Forever Moriah Foundation will host a new event to raise seasonal cheer and funds for childhood cancer research. “Runway to Hope” is a charity Christmas fashion show, to be held on Sunday, December 18th at 2:00 pm at Spotsylvania Towne Center, which will be modeled by children aged 2-16 who are in cancer treatment or in remission . , or walking in honor of a deceased sibling.
The children will model the holiday clothes they chose from Belk or Macy’s, Richardson said.
The fashion show will be combined with the Forever Moriah Foundation’s annual toy drive, which collects toys to be donated to Inova Fairfax Hospital, Washington National Children’s Hospital, VCU Richmond Medical Center and Ronald McDonald House Charities of Greater Washington.
There will be a gift card raffle for everyone who donates a toy, as well as a photo booth and card making and craft booths during the event. Princesses and superheroes provided by Alexandria-based Fantastical Characters Company will take the stage with the children, Richardson said.
Spotsylvania Towne Centre, Mielle Organics, Macy’s and Belk are sponsoring the fashion show along with the Forever Moriah Foundation.
Richardson said she had planned a charity fashion show before the pandemic, but had to put those plans on hold.
“We’re very excited to be able to do it now,” he said. “To be able to do that [Moriah’s] honor—I couldn’t ask for anything else for Christmas. The gift I give myself is to give back to these kids.”
For more information about the event, visit the foundation’s website at forevermoriah.org.
Adele Uphaus: 540/735-1973