NEWS: Ellen Surprises 9-Year-Old Girl Who Lost Prosthetic Legs & Wheelchair in Wildfire

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Rain finally had fallen in California over the Sonoma and Napa county valleys after 12 days of raging fires that ravaged hillsides, vineyards, and homes and had taken the lives of 40 people. With it came the hope that the firefight that took more than 20,000 firefighters from states and countries from near and far, would soon coming to a close.

It is, however, a reminder that rebuilding has only begun. The morning of Oct. 20, families were finally allowed into the now famous Coffey Park, with many, it’s their first chance to see the devastation that was once their homes and neighborhood.

On Oct. 19, Ellen DeGeneres welcomed a mother and daughter duo to the show whom survived the fire but lost everything — including a 9-year-old’s prosthetic legs — for a donation and a big announcement. First, Ellen let the pair share their breathtaking experience and unique loss.

Jessica Biagini woke to a call from her grandmother around 1 a.m. on Oct. 10. The 86-year-old lived on Mark West Springs Road and believed (accurately) that she was in danger of the fast-approaching fire. She needed help.

Biagini leapt into action, not wasting any time putting on clothes before swooping up her daughter Lilly and jumping into Biagini’s mother’s car, frantic to reach her grandmother. With all the traffic, it didn’t take her long to realize that something was extremely wrong.

When Biagini finally reached her grandmother’s house only to find the woman’s garage open and the house empty. Realizing that Biagini was taking too long, the grandmother took a different way out.
It wasn’t until the pair were heading back and stuck in traffic that Lilly asked her mother about her wheelchair, prosthetic legs, and “shorties,” special mini prosthetics that allow Lilly to get to the restroom and around the house without attaching the full-length prosthetics. They were back at the house.

By this point, the deadly fire had jumped the six-lane freeway and was heading directly for their subdivision. They would soon learn there would be no going back.
By the time they got to the Coffey Park neighborhood, no one was being allowed back in — the neighborhood was already on fire and first responders were still trying to get everyone out. Lilly and her mom took refuge at Lilly’s aunt’s house in San Francisco.

Lilly was born with a rare congenital disorder called Arthrogryposis Multiplex Congenita (AMC), a condition where joints don’t develop. Lilly had no joints in her legs and was to be wheelchair bound her whole life. At age 6, Lilly made the brave and life-changing choice to have her legs amputated.

Since, she has been fitted for prosthetics as she grows up and has enjoyed an active life where she swims, rides horseback, runs, and participates in programs with other children that have lost limbs. While recovery from the initial amputation was a difficult journey, all parties involved believed that it had been for the better, and that Lilly was happy — with a fantastic attitude and spirit.

Biagini lost her job a few months back, which meant that her daughter’s prosthetics were no longer covered and that means the replacement costs is on her. When Hanger Clinic, the company that fits Lilly for prosthetics, heard about the neighborhood-annihilating fire, they graciously provided replacement equipment for free.

Though they have found semi-permanent housing in Novato, California, about 40 minutes South of Santa Rosa, Biagini’s car got burned in the fire. Ellen teamed up with Shutterfly to donate a brand new 2017 Nissan Versa. For Lilly, whose 10th birthday is on Nov. 2, the back seat was overloaded with gifts — including specific requests that Lilly had made but had been lost in the fire.

While Ellen has been known for going above and beyond to support ordinary families going through extraordinary circumstances, she hasn’t stopped there. She announced that she teamed up with GoFundMe to start a campaign to help the victims of the California wildfires.

What has been seen over and over again is that when things ưent wrong, communities come together. It is beautiful that, in an interconnected digital age, the definition of “neighbor” extends across the whole world. The people of Sonoma and Napa County are so appreciative of the onslaught of support from the global community, who have helped combat these historic blazes.

Jake Clayton has been playing the piano since he was 5 years old. After years of training, he became the star of a “concerto debut at age 10, performing Mozart with the Saddleback College Orchestra in California.”

Boy Walks up to Piano in Costco, Shoppers Blown away When 9-Year-Old Starts Playing

Jake Clayton has been playing the piano ever since he was 5 years old. After years of training, he became the star of a “concerto debut at age 10, performing Mozart with the Saddleback College Orchestra in California.”

Clayton had played his heart out for various audiences in California. Apart from being a graduate of the Summer Academy for Chamber Music at the University of California Irvine, the passionate pianist had won several awards.

As he started to play a piano rendition of the Hungarian folk dance, Csárdás, even shoppers stopped to listen. Beginning in a slow tempo, Clayton’s little fingers soon began to play vigorously.

The kid was totally zoned in and focused. Suddenly, the arrangement came to a slower pace, but Clayton played it with lots of passion and precision.

Just when everyone thought the impromptu recital was over, Clayton ended Csárdás in an uptempo rhythm. Upon finishing, one impressed lady shouted, “bravo!”
This gifted child was clearly born for showbiz! And what better place to play his little heart out than Costco?

While playing in concert venues came second nature to Clayton, this may have been his best performance yet. It was not done for a competition, but just for fun in a casual setting, which I’m sure most of those shoppers truly enjoyed!

Shoppers were blown apart by the child prodigy. One man even stood up right next to Clayton to get a close-up shot.

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