11/01/2011 - By Gayle Irwin
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Seeing the red hair, you know these children are related. Micah, Jacob and Lynn Heyer, ages 13, 11 and 8 respectively, have many things in common in addition to their hair color. Yet, like most siblings, each possesses his/her own individual talents and interests.
The tragic losses of their older brother and their father help closely bind these siblings with each other and with their mother, relatives and faith family. In July, the children and their mother, Sally, participated in a family reunion in Yellowstone National Park, and in August, the two youngest spent time with grandparents in California – they even visited Disneyland.
The family reunion took place the week of July 4th, with nearly 30 family members gathering in Yellowstone for several days. This was the first time the children had seen some of their relatives, especially cousins, in nearly eight years. "It was exciting," Sally said.
Though the children had been to Yellowstone several years ago, gathering with family in such a unique place was special to them. Making up games and walking logs were primary pastimes shared with their cousins.
However, Jacob's log-walking took him to the hospital.
"I slid off a log, landed on a stump and hurt my back," he explained.
Though he wasn't seriously injured, as a precaution the park medics packed his neck in a brace and transported him by ambulance to the Jackson hospital.
Seeing wildlife, including coyotes, bison and the bear, and walking the geyser boardwalks were other ways the family spent their time in Yellowstone. Micah liked the geysers.
"I thought they were neat," he said.
"Reconnecting with family was special," Sally added.
Sally's sister is a missionary in Albania, a career Jacob is seriously considering. He attended church camp on Casper Mountain earlier this year, and last summer Micah went to Salt Lake City as part of the World Changers program.
"We fixed up houses," he explained, "landscaping and some painting."
Micah, who enjoys video games, said he wants to learn to create games when he gets older. Sister Lynn wants to follow in mother's footsteps and work in medicine, possibly becoming a surgeon.
"It's cool (to work in medicine)," said Lynn.
Lynn is in third grade at Oregon Trail Elementary while brothers Jacob and Micah attend CY Middle School. Her older brothers participated in advanced classes in school. This year Micah is participating in cross-country running for the first time.
All three siblings share an enjoyment of music. Micah was a member of the Casper Children's Chorale for several years; Jacob started last year, and Lynn begins Bel Canto this fall.
Spending time at College Heights Baptist, being involved with the youth groups there, and helping their mom and other people are other common traits in the children. Lynn sometimes helps cook and clean at home and takes care of the family cat.
"And, if there's a kid in need, like on the playground, I'll help them," she added.
Micah also has a servant's heart. In addition to assisting with World Changers, he participates in the church's praise team, helped with Vacation Bible School, and takes care of his siblings when needed.
"Micah's been a great help to me," Sally said.
Helping one another as a family and sharing interests like computer games, music, sports and faith, will keep the children busy as they continue to learn and grow.