VIDEO: 2017 Humanitarian Honoree Steve Wilson Gives Teen Cancer Patient Love, Hope, Courage
By Maria Sonnenberg // October 16, 2017
Has produced more than 300 video clips of support
ABOVE VIDEO: When Steve Wilson heard that Julie Spurlock, a daughter of a friend, was facing cancer for the second time in her short life, he wanted to do something to lift her spirits. In an aha! moment, Wilson hatched the plan to ask friends and families to send video and audio clips showing their support of Julie.
BREVARD COUNTY, FLORIDA – It started with just a few words of encouragement for a young woman battling for her life, but it mushroomed into a global outpouring of love for teenager Julie Spurlock.
Steve Wilson’s efforts on behalf of Julie show how much one individual can accomplish.
When Wilson heard that Julie, a daughter of a friend, was facing cancer for the second time in her short life, he wanted to do something to lift her spirits.
In an aha! moment, Wilson hatched the plan to ask friends and families to send video and audio clips showing their support of Julie.
The response was so strong that Wilson then went to the next level and contacted Brevard County Sheriff Wayne Ivey, U.S. Congressman Bill Posey and other well-known area community leaders.
When they quickly responded, Wilson continued on his quest, asking Florida Governor Rick Scott to send a message of encouragement for Julie.
Scott did just that, and invited Julie to visit him in Tallahassee. Wilson was now on a mission for Julie.
“When Governor Scott’s video came in, I started thinking on a much larger scale,” he said.
Invitation To the White House
Wilson then asked vice-presidential candidate Mike Pence to join Julie’s rapidly growing crowd of well-wishers. Not only did Pence agree to a get-well video, he also invited Julie to the White House. He has since contacted politicians, musicians, college and professional athletes, actors…and even Santa Claus!
They all responded warmly, inviting her to a Los Angeles Lakers’ game, as well as to a Newsboys concert and whitewater rafting with Olympian Casey Eichfeld. LeBron James of the Cleveland Cavaliers sent a care package along with a sincerely penned letter.
She has received gifts from the Chicago Bears, the Green Bay Packers, Team USA Softball and many others. Former president George W. Bush sent his best wishes as did racing superstar Danica Patrick.
The 300th video clip Julie received was a particularly special one. Julie being a sports fan, was thrilled when eleven-time National Champion Coach Geno Auriemma of the UCONN Huskies women’s basketball team encouraged her to keep battling.
Wilson vowed to continue gathering video clips until Julie beats cancer again.
“My goal has always been to bring a smile to her face and to raise awareness about the need for more funding and research for pediatric cancer issues,” he said.
Wilson was honored during the 2017 Central Florida Humanitarian Awards on Thursday, Nov. 2 at the Hilton Melbourne Rialto Place, located at 200 Rialto Place in Melbourne, Florida.
UPDATE: On July 9, 2018, Julie took her last chemotherapy treatment at Arnold Palmer Hospital and there was never any doubt that she would win the battle!
“Thank you to all of those that supported Julie by sending in video clips,” said Wilson. “And, thank you to all of you that have supported Julie with your thoughts and prayers. They have meant more than you can ever know.”
ABOVE VIDEO: Steve Wilson gathered over 340 video clips from people offering well-wishes and encouragement for Julie through her trying time.
Recognizing Outstanding Individuals & Organizations Who Dedicate Their Time, Talent and Treasure
CENTRAL FLORIDA, USA – The 2017 Central Florida Humanitarians have been announced and include outstanding individuals and organizations from the medical, business, education and governmental communities.
Also announced today was the honoree for the Lifetime Achievement.
The Central Florida Humanitarian honorees will be recognized during a Gala event on Thursday, Nov. 2, at the Hilton Melbourne Rialto Place in Melbourne, Florida.
The Central Florida Humanitarian Awards were created eight years ago by Space Coast Daily to recognize outstanding individuals and organizations that dedicate their time, talent or treasure to help people in need locally – and around the world.
TIME: In this category consider candidates who have selflessly and consistently devoted their time as volunteers at hospitals and nursing homes, in activities for the less fortunate and as organizers, administrators or operatives in the many other altruistic endeavors in our community.
TALENT: In this category give consideration to those who have volunteered their special talents and expertise to address specific circumstances in which the lives of those in need are improved.
TREASURE: The humanitarians in this category will include those who have generously shared their monetary good fortune and/or volunteered their time and efforts in fund raising for the advancement of a philanthropic cause.
All 2017 honorees will be featured in the Oct/Nov 2017 edition of Space Coast Daily magazine and online at SpaceCoastDaily.com. The magazine will be available the first week of October in both print and digital editions, which will also be available on SpaceCoastDaily.com.
For the eighth consecutive year, the Central Florida Humanitarian committee will also honor hospital and hospice volunteers from Health First Hospice, the Dr. Jey Pillai Center for Hospice Care at Wasdin Woods, VITAS, Hospice of St. Francis, Health First Cape Canaveral Hospital, Health First Viera Hospital, Health First Holmes Regional Medical Center, Health First Palm Bay Hospital, Wuesthoff Medical Center – Melbourne, Wuesthoff Medical Center – Rockledge, the VA Clinic in Viera, and Sebastian River Medical Center.
ORGANIZATIONS AND INDIVIDUALS SELECTED TO BE HONORED INCLUDE:
• BCSO Animal Services
• BCSO Honor Guard
• Brevard Guardian Ad Litem
• Brevard C.A.R.E.S
• Driven by Heart (formerly Breast Friends)
• Genesis House
• Health First Foundation
• Space Coast Harley-Davidson
• Tess Brady and OASIS
• Total Home Roofing
• Rosette Brown
• Randy Coleman
• Bill Ellis
• Bjornar and Bjorg Hermansen
• Eugene Johnson
• Adrian Lafitte
• Dr. Romain Onteniente
• Valerie Paul
• Joan Throm
• Robin Whiting
• Steve Wilson
• The 2017 Central Florida Humanitarian Lifetime Achievement honoree is Judge Dean Moxley.
HONORING SELFLESS VOLUNTEERISM
“Over the years, our editorial team has had the distinct honor and pleasure of identifying and featuring the many members of our community who give back so much and are dedicated to reaching out and helping others, here and throughout the world, in a multitude of ways,” said Space Coast Daily Editor-In-Chief Dr. Jim Palermo.
“For the eight consecutive year, we will once again produce the Central Florida Humanitarian Awards Gala on the first Thursday of November. This year, more than 30 deserving humanitarians will be honored during the Gala.”
The Central Florida Humanitarian Awards will be part of “Space Coast Health Week,” a comprehensive series of health and educational events produced by Space Coast Daily.
JOIN US FOR AN INSPIRATIONAL EVENING
This inspiring and compelling event is sponsored by Florida Tech, Health First, SOAR, BioCellular Therapies, First Choice Medical Group, Clear Choice Health Care, Brevard Geriatrics, Dr. Mark Pinsky, Rock Paper Simple, Hilton Melbourne Rialto Place, Friday Night Locker Room, Safari Mail House, Space Coast Daily magazine and SpaceCoastDaily.com. Each honoree or organization will be presented the Central Florida Humanitarian Crystal Globe.
“We would like to thank our long list of sponsors who support the Central Florida Humanitarian Awards and who make this wonderful event possible,” said Giles Malone, a partner with Space Coast Daily and Brevard Productions, who annually produce all the events of Space Coast Medicine Week.
COMPELLING MULTIMEDIA TRIBUTE VIDEOS & STORIES
Stay tuned to Space Coast Daily magazine and SpaceCoastDaily.com for exclusive and comprehensive multimedia coverage of each honoree as we present their compelling stories.
“Please join us on Thursday, Nov. 2 to celebrate and be inspired by these incredible individuals and groups,” said Space Coast Daily President & Publisher Tom Palermo.
“In the meantime, please click the link below that showcases the distinguished Central Florida Humanitarian Alumni.”
CLICK HERE TO SEE THE CENTRAL FLORIDA HUMANITARIAN ALUMNI
ABOVE MAP: The 2017 Central Florida Humanitarian Awards took place Thursday, Nov. 2 at the Hilton Melbourne Rialto Place, located at 200 Rialto Place in Melbourne, Florida.