American Girl has honored real-life heroes with five special edition dolls modeled after American front line workers.
The custom dolls — a paramedic, a pilot, a teacher, a grocery store worker, and a caregiver — are modeled after “Heroes with Heart” contest winners. Kids across the U.S. nominated first responders and other front-line workers they knew and the Mattel-owned doll company picked five people to be made into custom dolls. Each kid nominator also received a $200 American Girl gift card.
One of the chosen heroes was April O’Quinn, an EMT in Richmond, Virginia, who was nominated by her niece, Lacey. O’Quinn caught COVID-19 while on the job back in March and was off from work for a month recuperating.
When she heard that Lacey had nominated her, she was worried Lacey would be disappointed if she wasn’t picked. So O’Quinn and Lacey’s mother started putting together a custom doll for her niece on her own, according to the Richmond Times-Dispatch.
When Lacey called to tell her they’d won, O’Quinn was shocked. But she is glad the contest is focusing on those “that are out there every day, doing what we’ve done in the past and continue to do today, even though the risk of catching this crazy disease is still there,” she told local news station WTVR.
O’Quinn gave her mini-me doll to her niece and is glad that she can show that women are just as good as men in the world of emergency medical services.
Here’s a Facebook post from The Richmond Ambulance Authority telling the story:
American Girl received over 1,000 entries in the “Heroes with Heart” competition, CNN reported.
The other heroes are 17-year-old Xavier, a grocery store worker with asthma who was nominated by his sister; Pam, a teacher nominated by her students; Sarah, a nurse assistant nominated by her granddaughter; and Laurent, a pilot nominated by his daughter.
While you won’t be able to buy the April EMT doll or the four other winning dolls, you can purchase “American Girl #ThankYouHeroes Scrubs” for $24. Each set has a doll-sized scrub top and pants, fabric mask, and slip-on plastic shoes. For each scrub set purchased, American Girl will donate a doll activity book to First Responders Children’s Foundation.
@American_Girl posted a tweet showing the cute scrubs and face mask:
— American Girl (@American_Girl) June 24, 2020