Before celebrating Thanksgiving with their families, five Van Alstyne families gathered at the home of Ashley Williams to serve and get to know a special group of visitors to the United States.

The Haitian National Amputee Soccer Team are on a five week goodwill tour of playing college soccer teams in exhibition matches in Texas, Georgia and Tennessee before going to the Amputee World Cup next year in Mexico City. Williams met the leader of the team, Dr. Fred Sorells, at the dentist office of McDougall and Richards in Richardson, where Ashley is a dental hygienist.

Dr. Sorells told Ashley about the team and their upcoming tour and the question was asked, “What are you doing for Thanksgiving?” Fred had no clue and did not know where to even begin, as finding lodging was his priority. Russell and Kelly Moore, Mark and Missy Wyatt, Mark and Emily Freeman and Chad and Kim Blumrick, along with two other employees of McDougall and Richards, came together to serve Thanksgiving lunch to the entire soccer team.

The afternoon consisted of singing in French and playing video games. Van Alstyne Middle School students Ava Williams, Lauren Moore, Sam Wyatt, Sarah Wyatt and Jack Williams joined Van Alstyne Elementary School students Seth Wyatt, Cullen Blumrick and Pierce Williams for a game of soccer against the Haitian national team before eating a meal as one big family.

Each member of the National Haitian Amputee Soccer Team lost a limb in the devastating earthquake in the 7.0 2010 earthquake that claimed over 100,000 lives; some of the team members have prosthetics donated by doctors in Texas and Oklahoma. Each visit the Haitian national team makes to the United States, McDougall and Richards Dentistry give free dental care to the team members and perform any necessary work needed; this year alone the cost was over $12,000.

For more information on the Haitian National Amputee Soccer Team, visit: