Teen queen speaks for shriners - WTOC-TV: Savannah, Beaufort, SC, News, Weather & Sports

Teen queen speaks for shriners

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Jada Ussery's diamond tiera is a little different from the maroon fezzes worn by the members of the Quint Shrine Club, but she's as at home as any of the men.

The reigning Miss Golden Isles Outstanding Teen became interested in Shriners when a family friend's child received treatment at one of the Shriner's hospitals.

"I started researching them and followed the local club on Facebook," she explained. "People just think they're a bunch of parade clowns and just like to have a good time, but they do much more."

She's also learning first hand about the hospitals, as she's been diagnosed with Scoliosis and been to one of the hospitals for treatment. Shriners offer medical treatment at their hospitals to children who have birth defects, burns, or crippling injuries, all at no cost to the young patients or their families.

Ussery learned enough that she adopted Shriners hospitals as her platform for the upcoming Miss Georgia Outstanding Teen pageant in a few weeks.

She has also met many of the other fellow patients in the region. So far in 2014, Quint Shrine Club has referred and assisted 27 children and teens to get treatment at one of the Shriners hospitals.

One of the most recent is Kerigan Mallard. The 17 year old from Statesboro was taken to the burn facility after a kitchen fire in February.

"Sunday was eleven weeks since it happened, and my recovery is beyond what I could have expected, and that's because of the care I got from the Shriners."

Jada and some classmates at Robert Toombs Christian Academy also help the Shriners by crafting fleece blankets they call Knots of Love.

"Each one is hand done and each knot is indivual and uniqe and represents how unique each child is and we take them to the hospitals for the children entering treatment," she said.

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