Lorraine Thomas

Lorraine is a mother of five, grandmother of 17, and passionate supporter of her late husband’s Foundation. She remembers when the Foundation was just an idea in Dave’s head, and looks back with pride at how much the organization has accomplished in the two decades since.

“Every time a child in foster care is given a loving, permanent home, we fulfill Dave’s greatest wish,” says Lorraine. “But there are so many kids out there still waiting to be adopted. That’s how we know we have to keep pushing forward.”

Lorraine now keeps Dave’s spirit and influence alive as a member of the Foundation’s Board of Trustees. “Dave wholeheartedly believed that children in foster care are our shared responsibility,” she says. “There are a lot of great causes out there. But these children are everyone’s cause. They just need love and a home. And anyone can provide that.”

Wendy (Thomas) Morse

Wendy was 8 when her dad opened the first Wendy’s restaurant in downtown Columbus, Ohio. Today the company’s namesake is a partner in the Thomas 5, a Wendy’s franchise operating more than 30 restaurants in Ohio. She also serves on the Foundation’s Board of Trustees, championing the cause through fundraising and speaking engagements. “My father instilled in me not just a love for the business, but also a love for kids and doing the right thing,” Wendy says.

The Thomas 5 provides support by participating in DTFA Kickball, fundraising campaigns that support the Foundation, and by raising awareness about foster care adoption in their restaurants. They also invite all customers to drop change into Foundation canisters. “We want Wendy’s customers to know they can make a difference,” says Wendy. “A few cents goes a long way.”

McKenzie Morse

Daughter of Wendy and granddaughter of Lorraine, McKenzie is a 19-year-old, third-generation advocate for the Foundation. She recently made a major contribution by hosting the first DTFA Kickball for a Home fundraiser in 2011.

“I was volunteering in the Foundation office when we started talking about this kickball idea,” McKenzie remembers. “Not long after, I decided to do the kickball tournament as my high school senior project.

My grandpa did some really great things — and I think he’d be proud of this event,” McKenzie says. “I’m just really glad to be able to help kids in foster care find homes.”

Since McKenzie left for college, DTFA Kickball for a Home has blossomed into a grassroots fundraising campaign. People across North America are hosting DTFA Kickball events to help the Foundation create even more forever families.

As for what Dave would think about kickball, McKenzie answers with a smile, “I think he’d have a blast. He’d make a great coach.”