"My mother was a bus driver. She loved kids. She had three of her own and four grandchildren," said Brown. "We were her world. I know that she would be really excited about the fact her Beanie Babies are being used to touch the lives of children."
The Beanie Babies also serve a special function in the hospital's nursery, where smaller babies can be positioned in their hospital carts using the tiny stuffed animals as pillows, said Hayes.
"They're the only product that can go through the sterilization process," said Hayes, who once worked in a tertiary facility with a 46-bed neonatal intensive care unit, where Beanie Babies were used on a regular basis, on a larger scale. "So, a donation of Beanie Babies is phenomenal. And, any donation we get that can put a smile on a child's face, especially a sick child, means the world."
"It means a lot to see that whether it's through us children, her grandchildren, or the things that she has done, like this, that she can impact lives, even though she's not here anymore," Brown said of her mother. "It's the legacy she left."