By: Pat Fox of Georgia Weekly Post
Yard signs are appearing around many front yards all over The City of Dunwoody.
"This is a city wide race. I am ready to give back to my city. They were there for me. I am here for each one of them. This is my thank you to each one of the 45,000," said Becky Springer to one of her many friends in Dunwoody while having an ice cream at Bruster's.
Becky Springer and her staff of volunteers are catching up with requests from home owners and voters.
"Phone calls and small donations as little as $20 are coming in non-stop," said Springer.
A couple living close to Dunwoody Country cCub drove to her home and left a check and a business card. They work in health care and state services.
The wife placed it at her mail box including a note reading "The times of the Siamese twin are over," she wrote.
Georgia Weekly post reached out to the couple by phone for clarification. "The Siamese twins are Mike Davis and Terry Nall. We blame them for all the money wasted on pet projects and consulting contracts. Waste. Waste. Waste. Our taxes went and are going up because of the two of them, four years were too much, we should bring the terms down to two, otherwise we are stuck for four," they told Georgia weekly Post.
"Becky Springer is in the race to win it. She will retire Mike Davis's political career," three of her supporters told Georgia Weekly Post. They live close to Dunwoody High School.
"As expected, Becky is taking on a king and a close follower of Mayor Mike Davis," said a woman walking her dog on Womack. "She is the only woman in the race. The other two just got a free ride," she added.
A solo local weekly publication in the City of Dunwoody posted a notice of Springer's plans to run.
The Editor of a Dunwpoody paper of limited circulation, placed Nall's announcement to run on the front page for two times.
Pat Talmadge, in a recorded interview with Georgia Weekly Post expressed her support and endorsement for the mother of three.
City Councilman Denis Shortal, who is running in a three way race for mayor including incumbent Mike Davis and the unknown Chris Grivakis, said he could not comment on Springer’s campaign. He is out knocking on doors every weekend. He is not talking to the media, according to his key adviser.
Terry Nall showed concerns over her entering the race according to close sources. "He spent hours looking for those who planted the idea in her head," according to a source who sat with him during those hours! "He started planing for his next run for Mayor four years from now," said the same source. "He is expecting to loose to Becky Springer. He even lost his temper around the end of the meeting. He is not happy to see Springer in the race," said the source.
▲ Colin Sims and son Alex Sims wanted their pictures taken with Becky Springer, and published. Springer spent a few hours visiting and meeting her friends and supporters on Sunday at Bruster's in Dunwoody Village. Mrs. Springer had a busy day knocking on doors, putting signs in front yards and saying hello to many voters in Dunwoody. She does her campaigning between her motherly duties such as driving her daughter to SAT school and going to a family baby shower. Her friends describe her as having the energy to meet all challenges over the years.
Springer, 47, is one of the most popular and renowned women in Georgia, most admired for overcoming the ravages of a debilitating blood disease that caused her to lose her hands and feet.
▲ Alison Lalla, Daughter Sadie, Kayla Lucas and Sara Srochi were all excited to see and greet Becky Springer at Bruster's.
In the spring of 2013, 12 prominent couples from around Dunwoody held a dinner in her honor to show their appreciation and offer their support. That kind of support has been woven into her life, especially over the past seven years when she fell ill. Hundreds of neighbors and friends from church and the community mounted drives to provide help.
“It was a very different life for me,” she says. A former model, Springer said she was surprised at her own attitude, how positively she approached the future. She attributes it to the love of family, friends and God. There is little in the way of hurdles that Becky Springer hasn’t already cleared.
▲ Becky Springer meeting and greeting friends and supporters at Bruster's of Dunwoody Village. It is one of her daughters favorite ice cream places.
But she hasn’t been alone. Her husband, Paul, has stepped up to take over many of the household chores. She describes him as a saint. The support comes from friends, too. She was seen around town visiting with many of her friends. She is a full time mom. She spend many hours with her kids and joins their outdoors activities.
Springer lost her hands and feet to a rare bacterial infection seven years ago when she contracted Haemophilius Influenzae, a bacterium that can cause severe infection. While children under the age of 5 are its most common targets, the bacterium ravaged Springer, attacking small blood vessels in her limbs and confining her to intensive care for three months.
The disease also attacked her kidneys and forced her into dialysis, with sessions running close to four hours three days a week for three years.
In early 2009, the Piedmont Hospital Transplant Institute placed Springer on the kidney transplant list. Months passed, but no suitable donor was found among family, friends and many anonymous donors.
Equipped with prosthetics for her feet and some innovative apparatuses she helped develop to wear on her wrists, Springer managed her life from home, raising her three daughters and waiting for a kidney match.
She didn’t sit still. One of the things she did was join a book club to keep her mind occupied. It was a decision that ultimately saved her life.
Springer struck up a friendship with one of the club members, Amy Otto, who grew more impressed with Springer’s fortitude over the months. As the friendship grew, Otto contemplated what it might require to have herself tested as a potential kidney donor. After doing her own research, Otto had herself tested. Incredibly, she was a perfect match.
Springer said that if a patient is down toward the bottom on the kidney donation list and a perfect, six-point match is found, the patient is automatically moved to the top. “That’s how good a six-point match is,” Springer says.
The transplant was performed in the summer of 2011, and within a few months, both women were back to their normal lives, only healthier. Springer’s color returned almost immediately, and she was taken off dialysis. Otto said the experience heightened her awareness of what is important in life.
Springer said during the long months she had prayed for a kidney match, she had no idea she would find one in her own circle of new friends. “I can’t thank God enough for the beautiful kidney I received,” she says.
A year after the operation, some 50 friends and family hosted Springer and Otto at a gathering in Dunwoody. Amid the revelry and celebration, guests were asked to contribute to Piedmont Hospital’s Mason Transplant Clinic, where Springer works as a volunteer.
Springer also volunteers with the children’s programs at Dunwoody United Methodist Church.
As she does throw her hat in the political ring as expected, Springer can hope to draw on the same enthusiastic support she received in her time of need – possibly as a way of returning the favor to Dunwoody residents and committing herself to the full-time demands of public office for a mere $12,000 salary.