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Heartfelt Hospice dedicates pediatric room in memory of Johnathan Mars

By Staff
DEDICATION Andy, left, Robin and Josh Mars dedicate a room on Friday at Alliance Health Center to their son and brother, Johnathan. A plaque with a Bible verse greets people as they walk into the room, which is decorated to make sick children and their families feel more comfortable in the hospital. PHOTO BY CARISA MCCAIN / THE MERIDIAN STAR
By Steve Gillespie / staff writer
Oct. 12, 2002
Johnathan Mars was remembered by friends and family on Friday during a dedication ceremony at Alliance Health Center.
Johnathan, son of Andy and Robin Mars of Meridian, died May 31 of neuroblastoma, a malignant tumor that originates in the adrenal glands. He was 4.
On Friday, an in-patient pediatric room for Heartfelt Hospice was dedicated as the Johnathan Andrew Mars Room. The room is on the sixth floor of Alliance Health Center.
Robin cut a yellow ribbon from the threshold of the room and she and Andy unveiled a plaque on the door during the dedication ceremony. The plaque has a photograph of Johnathan on it. He is wearing a red cap with Mickey Mouse on it. He got the cap at Walt Disney World last year on a trip he was given from the Make-A-Wish Foundation.
The plaque reads: "In Loving Memory of Johnathan Andrew Mars," followed by a Bible verse Andy posted on the family refrigerator after Johnathan died "Jesus said, Let the children come to me. Don't keep them away. The kingdom of heaven belongs to people like them'" Matthew 19:14. Dupree Adcock, a registered nurse and owner and administrator of Heartfelt Hospice, called Johnathan a hero.
Robin and Andy both said Johnathan would have loved the room. It is decorated with a jungle motif. Floyd A. Bozeman, an art and music therapist and bereavement coordinator with Heartfelt Hospice, painted the walls of the room with monkeys, an elephant, zebra, giraffe and other jungle animals.
Johnathan's brother, Josh, 12, said: "People are going to love it when they come here."