NEWALLA, Okla. (KFOR) – Turning pain into purpose; that’s the mission for an Oklahoma grandmother who lost her young granddaughter.
Paisley Palmer loved to sing. She found joy in sunflowers and spread joy in smiles.
Paisley died in a car crash in 2019, two weeks before her sixth birthday. Her family founded The Paisley Project as a way to process their own grief. Lacey Dietz nominated Paisley’s grandmother, Kim Hamilton, for Pay It 4Ward.
First Fidelity Bank’s Pay It 4Ward award, is an honor for Oklahoma community members who go above and beyond. Kim Hamilton has turned her family’s loss into a blessing for so many people.
“By letting Paisley’s legacy live on she’s able to help other people and still celebrate the life of her granddaughter,” said Dietz. “Kim uses all the money she raises to provide meals for families. She also provides grief baskets, personal items, books and other things that help them get through the grieving process.”
Lacey and all her co-workers have a front row seat to Kim’s generosity.
“She has a big heart,” said Kathi Shaw. “Obviously you can’t say no to that.”
The Paisley Project provides grief support to families who’ve lost a child; often $600-$700 in meals, groceries or financial assistance for a child’s funeral.
“We’re all just a big family, and we support her,” said Hamilton’s co-worker Karen Hames. “We feel the hurt that she’s felt all these years.”
First Fidelity Bank’s Lynne Cross joined Hamilton’s co-workers for a $400 surprise.
“We help donate and we help get the stuff together for her,” said Destiny Cartwright.
“I think it helps her heal,” said Kim Calloway.
Kim Hamilton was surprised to be celebrated by her co-workers.
“You can’t fathom that loss,” she said. “You can never fathom that loss until you experience it. You lose people in the process because you’re still grieving. They keep going and you’re stuck. This helps me not to be stuck.”
The Paisley Project has helped more than 30 families in the past two years.
“It just feels good to have her in our lives every day. Even though she’s not here, you feel her. You feel her,” she said.
The Paisley Project is a selfless work of healing that has healed their hearts as well.
Paisley loved music. Every year, her family organizes a benefit concert. This year was the 3rd annual, and they raised more than $7,000. All of that money is used to support grieving families.
Paisley Palmer can no longer hold her grandmother’s hand but Kim can feel her presence every time The Paisley Project serves a family in their darkest hour.
Pay It 4Ward is sponsored by First Fidelity Bank.