MERRIAM, Kan. — It’s been nearly eight years since the attack on two Jewish centers in Overland Park.
Mindy Corporon lost her father and 14-year-old son that day. However, while she could dwell on the pain she feels for her loved ones, she’s making it her life’s mission to create kindness.
Corporon said the annual Seven Days event not only helps people get past the hardships they are facing, but it’s also helping generations of young people spread kindness in their communities.
She said finding happiness again is a journey.
“It helps fill your heart. It helps fill your soul, and it helps us all be better people,” Corporon said.
Corporon said her happiness was taken from her when a domestic terrorist murdered her teenage son Reat Underwood, her father Dr. William Corporon and Terri LaManno.
“Time itself does not heal. It actually takes pushing through and processing it because if we just allow time, then we’re just band aiding it,” Corporon said.
Seven years ago, she started Seven Days through her charity, Faith Always Wins. This year the virtual event will run from April 13-25. Each year they focus on love, kindness, connection, understanding and a call to action.
“I remember thinking I will never find joy again; I will never laugh again. This is the worst feeling in the entire world. What I want people to understand is you can find joy again. By giving kindness to someone else you get that back in return,” Corporon said.
This year one student will receive the ‘Ripple of Kindness’ Award for an act of kindness in their community. The recipient was selected through an essay contest. The organization also uses student artwork for their graphics by asking them to depict their vision of kindness. Seven Days is also organized with the help of youth leadership.
“Let’s let the next generation take action. We’re doing that by having the essay competition. We’re doing that by having the button art competition. We’re doing that by having our youth leadership team,” Corporon said.
She said it’s important to remember the loss you feel, but use it to not only find happiness again, but give kindness as well.
“What act of kindness can you do to find your onward? How are you going to find your onward? How are you going to make a ripple and change the world?” Corporon said.
The final event on April 23 is a virtual walk, and it’s the only event that requires a donation. Corporon said she hopes while people walk, they reflect on how you can create their own ripple of kindness and make someone’s day.
If you would like to sign up for any of the Seven Days events, you can find out more through their website.