Born with an imperfection in a single chromosome, Christy Parson lived a too-short life filled with grueling physical and mental challenges — from a cerebral palsy and kidney problems to frightening hallucinations and sometimes violent outbursts. Still, the smart, sweet young woman found joy wherever she could, including in one of Sound’s residential treatment homes.
“We weren’t sure Christy could ever live outside of Western State Hospital, where she was for seven years,” recalls her mother, Polly. “We’re so thankful Sound was there for us and took her into Avondale House. Sound gave Christy her last two years of enjoyable life.”
“She was really happy living there,” adds Christy’s father, Bill. “There are very few facilities that take mentally ill adults who also have a number of physical ailments and provide them with the nursing care they need. Avondale was ideal for her.”
When Christy passed away in 2009 at the age of just 43, her parents decided to donate the remaining funds in their daughter’s trust to Sound.
“Christy was the kind of person who would have wanted us to do this, a very giving and generous person,” Polly explains. “It’s nice for us to be able to think of her and support other families at Sound who are going through the same kinds of ordeals and suffering that she did.”
Bill and Polly support Sound because they believe the organization not only helps people with behavioral health issues, but also provides invaluable comfort and care to their families. They point out that almost everyone knows someone who has experienced mental health or addiction issues and that Sound offers them hope.
“We’re very appreciative of what Sound continues to do,” Bill concludes. “Mental illness, homelessness, addiction — these are societal problems, and it’s really encouraging that Sound has people who devote their lives to addressing them.”