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Published:November 29th, 2007 02:51 EST
Peace Corp Volunteer, Jessica Griffin, Fighting for her  Life

Peace Corp Volunteer, Jessica Griffin, Fighting for her Life

By Nancy Lee Wolfe (HR Development/Content Manager)

If you hear talk of apathetic young people who capitalize on opportunity with little regard for the needs of others, put a stop to it.  If for no other reason, do it for Jessica Griffin.

You see, 24-year-old Jessi has been a Peace Corp Volunteer for more than three years.  She has been teaching biology to children in the desperately poor Republic of Mozambique where the literacy rate is 48% and life expectancy is 40.9 years.  Now, though, Jessi’s loved ones are praying Jessi will see her 25th birthday.*

Just before Thanksgiving, in Mozambique, Jessi was involved in a terrible car accident which took one poor soul and left Jessi mangled and comatose. Her classroom is now silent.  Jessi’s students, who came to know the secrets of science through Jessi’s magical vision, are distraught.  To them, the world as they have come to know it in 3 years, has vanished.  They have suffered their own silent tsunami.

Facilitating Jessi’s evacuation to South Africa was highly problematic.  Jessi gave up the luxury of 911 when she dedicated her youth to opening doors for others.  When Jessi’s mother and brother boarded their plane for their 30-hour flight from Detroit to South Africa, they could not know if Jessi would survive the night.  Her brain mortally swollen, her respiratory system in crisis, Jessi was given little chance of survival.

Enter the Internet.  The chain was cast by email, IM and Blog:  Pray for Jessi. 

Miraculously, Jessi survived the night.  The swelling of her brain diminished of its own accord.  She responded to emergency efforts to save her life.  She is still the fighter.

Where does this leave Jessi now?  She is in a Johannesburg, South Africa hospital with her parents by her side, struggling to save their selfless daughter.

Jessi and her family need help.  The Student Operated Press will do all we can to ease the suffering of Jessi and her family.  Jessi calls to remembrance a time in America when the cry to authorities was embodied in a song:  “All we are saying is give peace a chance.”

Jessi is a descendant of Camelot, yes?  She left the comfort of her home and the safety of her family to take hope halfway around the world.  Jessi embodies and personifies the challenge, “. . . ask what you can do for your country.”  Camelot is eternal.  We seem to remember it that way.

In keeping with this dream having been kept, can you help Jessi, Senator Kennedy?  Caroline?  Maria, does Jessi merit the Minerva Award?  Oprah, can you hear us?  Please help Jessi come home.  Camelot cannot lose this peace warrior-- not in spirit or in flesh.

*Amy Lange, Fox 2 Detroit, reports, http://www.myfoxdetroit.com/myfox/pages/Home/Detail;jsessionid=CAA8C77C45B1F220C6C4FB272A8A74B2?contentId=5055605&version=2&locale=EN-US&layoutCode=VSTY&pageId=1.1.1&sflg=1