Jiffy Lube of Indiana proudly honors Kristin and Marcus Normington through their Do More™ initiative. The Normingtons started their foundation, Hoosier FWD, to pay it forward one family at a time. Their goal is to raise money for Indiana families facing financial hardships due to medical bills for children with special needs who don’t qualify for Medicaid or Financial Assistance.
Kristin and Marcus Normington started their foundation in honor of their son, Gage, who was born with a genetic condition known as Hydrocephalus. Since then, he has also been diagnosed with Hypertonia, Dystonia (Spasticity), Cerebral Palsy, Abducted Thumbs, Hip Dysplasia, EOE & MTHFR.
At 20 weeks pregnant, the Normingtons found out that Gage was a boy; at the same time, they found out that he had fluid in his brain. At the time, they did not know what that meant or the treatment it would entail once Gage was born.
17 hours after Gage took his first breath, he had his first brain surgery. He has since had 9 other brain surgeries, among numerous others. The Normingtons quickly realized how fast medical bills add up and how little insurance covers.
After receiving financial help from the community, the Normingtons decided to start Hoosier FWD and donate the remainder of the funds they raised to help other families in need. The most important thing that Kristin, Marcus, and Gage have learned throughout this process is that having a strong support system is vital. They have sought out other special needs families to provide support to those who might not have it.
While they are starting local and assisting the families they can reach in their community, the ultimate goal of Hoosier FWD is “to have a special needs center, all under one roof, and have a place where we can, where everybody can go, all-inclusive, where it’s like a YMCA but for special needs” said Marcus, Gage’s father.
In September 2023, Hoosier FWD provided a fence for a local family with two special needs children with drastically different needs. Capri Payton, mother of the children, talked about the impact that Hoosier FWD has had on her family’s life.
“We have a daughter that has autism and […] a fence was crucial for us,” She said. “That might sound silly to some but for our family, it was life-changing. She is non-verbal, she doesn’t follow simple commands, so when we’re outside, she darts.”
The Paytons have water behind their home, which is an extreme safety hazard for their daughter. They have another daughter, who is on the opposite end of the spectrum and relies on her family for everything – mobility, feeding, etc. Because of the stark difference in their needs, “taking them outside together was an impossible mission and that’s both of their happy places”.
With Hoosier FWD’s help, Capri and her family can spend quality time outside with all three of their children without worrying about their safety.
“Volunteering in the community and being a part of something bigger, I feel like is what we are all called to do”, said Kristin. “ We’re supposed to help each other, we’re supposed to build each other up, and volunteering is a way that you can share your gifts and your love for whatever it is that you’re passionate about.”
To help The Normingtons and Hoosier FWD continue paying it forward one family at a time, Jiffy Lube of Indiana is offering Kristin and Marcus a year’s worth of complimentary vehicle maintenance.