SAVANNAH, Ga. (WSAV) — Socks are a seemingly simple accessory —but to one local couple, they are so much more.
Alneata Kemp and her husband, David, have gone through the unimaginable. In 2012, they lost their daughter Courtney to an undiagnosed heart disease, just ten days shy of her 10th birthday.
“After Courtney passed, as any mother would, I found myself in bed. I had no desire to get up. But this one particular day, I started stirring around her bedroom and I found a bag of socks,” said Alneata Kemp.
It was Courtney’s love of socks that inspired her parents to create a non-profit in her memory— bringing awareness to Pediatric Heart Disease while embarking on a quest to cover feet.
“When I tell you that we have not found any greater healing than the ability to serve. To serve others. In the beginning, I wanted to hear my daughter’s name. I was so afraid of losing her yet again. But now, by way of giving to other people, it’s not even about hearing her name anymore. Because that, I believe, will carry on. It’s about the service that we can give to so many in need,” she explained.
Their mission has become their ministry, one that has even gained the support of the national apparel brand, Bombas, which donates thousands of socks to their cause each year.
Today, they’re stuffing bags to donate to other charities. Some will go to families at Savannah’s Safe Shelter. More than 1500 others to Flat Shoals Elementary in Decatur — a Title I school that serves a high number of students living at or below poverty levels.
“More than anything, it means the legacy that we’ll leave behind even after we’re gone. Not only for Courtney, our children, but just for people in need,” David said.
“We’ve come to believe that our socks are not just socks. Our socks are literally changing lives,” echoed Alneata.
The Kemps believe that there is a blessing in connecting. Now, they’re walking through life with a renewed purpose and a universal message of healing and warmth to anyone who has experienced loss.
“Our socks are just the avenue to get us to be able to spread hope and to spread joy and to spread happiness,” she said.
Alneata is also spreading happiness through her children’s books, which she calls ‘The Journey Series’. The first is “Courtney Caterpillar is Missing”, which can be found on Amazon. All of the proceeds support Socks for Courtney.