To all the world Alex Salser was an adorable teenager with long brown curls and a homecoming queen smile. But since her birth, Alex’s body had been posing all types of challenges due to Long-chain L-3 hydroxyacyl-CoA dehydrogenase deficiency (LCHAD), which meant that her body would not accept fat. That meant no French fries, bacon or ice cream. But over the year the very active teenager’s body lost ground in the battle. Eventually, she lost the ability to walk and had to rely on a wheelchair.
But that battle took a turn when Alex came on board with Equest. Thanks to her horse Amigo and the Equest staff and volunteers, she had discovered new friends and a change in her condition.
At the Equest Women’s Auxiliary Style Show and Luncheon on Tuesday, October 2, at Brook Hollow, Alex told Equest Women’s Auxiliary Founder Louise Griffeth and the 400+ guests that the week before she had mange with the use of a walker to take steps.
The event was that kind of community hug with longtime Equest support/volunteer Elsa Norwood receiving the 2018 Community Service Award with her children from across the family on the front row.
In presenting the award to Elsa, Louise told how the selection had to be made on the sly, since Elsa had usually been on the selection committee.
Still another star was Honorary Chair Peggy Sewell surrounded by daughter Jacquelin Sewell, Gail Turner, Lee Ann White, Nancy Halbreich, Gene Jones and Dianne Cash. Peggy looked embarrassed as Luncheon Chair Heather Randall reeled out her lengthy list of accomplishments and contributions.
But that wasn’t the end of the day’s surprises. In honor of Lisa and Kenny Troutt’s Triple Crown winner Justify that wasn’t able to make it to the event, Lisa underwrote places at the fashion show and luncheon for Equest clients and their parents.
It was learned that Justify had retired in July and happily grazing and filling up his “dance card.”
Adding to the give back the Sewells underwrote the attendance of veterans at the luncheon.
And the giving didn’t stop there. In her signature orange ensemble, Lyda Hill reported that she had just had her physical with Dr. Ken Coper, who told her that she was absolutely healthy… but she need to scale back on her seven-day workouts to five. Why? According to the good doctor, when a gal hits 76, parts do tend to wear out.
When asked if she planned to break the late Margaret McDermott’s record of 104, Lyda laughed that she had told her financial adviser to adjust their plans for her. She now had 110 as her goal.
That said Lyda admitted that while she wasn’t a regular fashion show regular, she was the Equest fundraiser to honor her brother, the late Al Hill Jr., who had been such a staunch supporter of the program. In his memory, she donated $50,000 to Equest.
After the luncheon Lyda would make another gift to support the Junior League of Dallas to kick-start the march to the JLD Centennial that will be in 2022.
But soon the Jan Strimple-produced fashion show of Highland Park Village merchants (Hadleigh’s, Alice and Olivia, Lela Rose, Etro, The Tot, Escada and Carolina Herrera) got underway with the guests including Equest Women’s Auxiliary President Kara Axley, Diane Brierly, Nancy Carter, Jill Rowlett, Linda Secret, Cindy North, the Cooley girls (Lisa Cooley and Ciara Cooley), Claire Emanuelson, Angie Kadesky, Pat McEvoy, Christie Carter, Tracy Lange in a Gucci suit, Ellen Winspear in a red lace CH Herrera dress and Lisa Singleton sporting those earrings that husband Marvin Singleton has picked up at The Salvation Army Fashion Show that she chaired.
BTW, MIA was Kristen “KJ” Sanger, who was duty bound to her desk. Despite not being at Brook Hollow, she and Lisa had been responsible for the table centerpieces.
The show itself ranged from glamorous Herrera to avant-garde Etro. But the true scene-stealers were the munchkins in The Tot. Needless to say, the moment the kiddos appeared on stage, cellphones rose to snap shots. Elsa’s granddaughter, four-year-old Molly Quinn McVea shined a special smile when she spied her folks at the end of the runway. Five-year-old Quinn Conlon stopped her runway walk to say, “Hi!” when she spied her grandparents Robyn and Don Conlon with camera in hand seated with her folks, Marybeth and Kevin Conlon.
For more photos including Presenting Sponsor Highland Park Village fashions, check MySweetCharity Photo Gallery.