80 Stories, 80 Days: Giving Kynedi a Lift

his wonderful story is a part of our 80 Stories, 80 Days campaign. For every story we collect through this campaign, Unique Connect will make a donation directly to our organization, so please submit your story now.

Written by  Octavia M. Pleas:

Dear Deborah and Advisory Board,

Words are not available to express the kindness exhibited toward my granddaughter, Kynedi. We were in dire straits when Variety stepped in and demonstrated care and concern for our unique position and was instrumental in expediting the repairs on Kynedi’s stair lift. Kynedi had been scooting up and down the stairs to get to her bedroom for over a week. She is wheelchair bound and had previously had surgery on her left femur on May 21, 2013. This would be her 35th surgery since birth. Her doctor gave strict instructions regarding her bearing weight until her sixth week checkup. Approximately two weeks ago, her stair lift stopped working. We had difficulty getting the technician to return because we owed from a previous service call. A service call is one hundred fifty dollars plus other necessary cost dependent upon needed repairs.I am a retired grandmother who lives on Social Security and Retirement with no savings to fall back on. We did not have money to get the stair lift repaired. The technician informed us that the circuit board was blown. We suspected that it could have occurred when we had the storm the week before. He told us that the cost of the board would be $584. We panicked because we had no idea how we could afford to repair the lift and we did not have money. Nor did we know how to keep Kynedi from bearing weight on her leg and getting her up and down the stairs.

I emailed Deborah Wiebrecht and she immediately began working to see if she could assist in resolving our dilemma. I submitted an application and followed the steps for assistance, and after a few days, Deborah and the Advisory Board at Variety called an emergency meeting, submitted a check to Silver Cross, and informed me that we would soon be getting the stair lift repaired soon.

We are so grateful for Variety and we can’t begin to express our appreciation … We now know that she will soon be able to get to her bedroom on her stair lift. We are so grateful.

This is not the first time Variety has assisted our family. In 2009, we needed a Conversion Van to take Kynedi to the many hospital and doctor appointments, school activities, etc. I traded my car in for a Van but she needed the ramp for getting her wheelchair in and out of the Van. Variety paid for the conversion ramp and it has been a life-saver. We use to have to pick Kynedi up and put her in the car, fold and unfold her wheelchair, coupled with taking the chair in and out of the trunk for every trip. It became more difficult as the years went by and she grew and became heavier to lift. With the ramp on the Van, she is able to steer herself into and out of the Van in her power chair.  It has now been four years and thanks to Variety, our lives have been much more manageable.

May God continue to bless you and the wonderful outreach you have for children with disabilities. If there is ever anything we can do to help Variety, please don’t hesitate to let us know. We will do our best to rise to the occasion.


Octavia M. Pleas


Through our 80 Stories, 80 Days campaign, we are asking all of you who have been touched by our organization in any way to share your story and help us gain more support for Kansas City children with developmental disabilities.

Unique Connect will donate directly to us for every story we collect through this campaign, so please submit your story now.  

Looking for another way to support Variety? Get your tickets for our biggest fundraiser of the year – the 2014 Variety Show starring Sinbad.

P.O. Box 3446 | Shawnee, KS 66203 | (913) 558-2309 |