Near-Death Accident Inspires Life-Giving Generosity in Northern Illinois Family
In 2006, Brian Peight endured a serious car accident. When medical workers placed a badly injured Brian into a helicopter that night, he was given a zero percent chance of living.
Somehow with his wife, Annie, there to support him, he pulled through the night and received numerous blood transfusions. While still in the hospital, Brian’s brother hosted a blood drive in Brian’s honor to pay back that life-saving act of generosity. Their hometown of Lena in northern Illinois answered the call, donating blood back to the community.
Since that blood drive in 2006, Annie and Brian had two children, Avery and Quinn, and they have continued to host annual blood drives to help others. In addition, they raise money to support an organization that they believe in. The fundraising started as a bake sale at the site of the blood drive and turned into a lemonade stand.
Annie’s cousin had become a foster parent through Lutheran Social Services of Illinois (LSSI) and connected Annie to their foster parent licensing representative. Annie and Brian decided to become foster parents with LSSI, and to date they have fostered five children.
“We want to help children who are struggling,” Annie said. “We want to give them a loving home and a foundation to go back to their biological parents.”
Annie notes that the bake sale and now lemonade stand, the portion of their annual blood drive is largely to instill a sense in their children of giving back to their community since they let their children choose where the money will be donated.
“We believe that Avery and Quinn have learned to give to people in need, in all of the years they have done the lemonade stand or bake sale,” she said.
At their last event, Avery and Quinn decided to donate the money they raised to LSSI in order to send a child in foster care to summer camp.
“LSSI and our foster children have touched our hearts in ways we never imagined,” said Annie. “We are so thankful to have given other children a place in our home and hearts, even if it is only for a short amount of time.”
Visit LSSI.org/fostercare to learn about becoming a foster parent.