Meet the float riders who will represent Shriners Hospitals for Children in the 2016 Rose Parade

NASCAR driver, patient ambassadors and leadership “Race to Adventure” on traditional New Year’s Day parade

Monday, December 21, 2015
Rendering of Shriners truck at Rose Parade

Shriners Hospitals for Children is proud to participate in the 127th Rose Parade® for the sixth consecutive year. This year, 11 float riders will be part of the 2016 float Fezzy Races to Adventure.

Fezzy Races to Adventure – built and decorated by Phoenix Decorating Co. – features Fezzy, a 17-foot high plush bear at the wheel of a gigantic fire truck. Fezzy’s passengers include NASCAR driver, David Ragan, current patients from three different Shriners Hospitals for Children and Shriners leadership. This whimsical representation illustrates the commitment of Shriners Hospitals for Children to the overall health and well-being of their patients. The staff is committed to providing both hope and healing, helping patients to overcome challenges and become as confident and independent as possible. They encourage children to dream big and “race to the adventures” that the future will bring.

Meet the float riders:

Mr. and Mrs. Gantt

Jerry Gantt – Imperial Potentate for Shriners International. Mr. Gantt is the highest-ranking Shriner in the world and also serves as the Chairman of the Board of Directors for Shriners Hospitals for Children. 

Lisa Gantt – First Lady of Shriners International and wife of Jerry Gantt. One of her duties as First Lady is to lead a fundraising program benefiting Shriners Hospitals for Children. 

The Claypools

Charles “Tad” Claypool – Trustee Emeritus for Shriners Hospitals for Children and Past Imperial Potentate.

Kay Claypool – Wife of Tad Claypool and former First Lady of Shriners International.

David Ragan David Ragan – NASCAR driver and member of the Shriners International fraternity. 
Katherine Koonce Katharine Koonce – 11, Katharine is one of two national patient ambassadors for the health care system. Six years ago, Katharine sustained burns on more than 75 percent of her body. Today, she is a happy and vivacious child and enjoys dancing, gymnastics, swimming and arts. Katherine's story.

Clint Crain Clint Crain – 16, Clint was involved in a boating accident and had his leg amputated about 18 months ago. He is a great speaker and a very active young man who enjoys hunting, FFA and outdoor activities. Clint's story.

Kelsea McKinley Kelsea McKinley – 13, Kelsea from Las Vegas, was diagnosed with scoliosis and wore a back brace 24 hours a day for about a year. She also underwent two surgeries to straighten her spine. Both surgeries were successful and thanks to Shriners Hospitals for Children — Los Angeles, Kelsea can now do what she loves most, swimming.  
Omar Hernandez Omar Hernandez – 16, Omar has been a patient at Shriners Hospitals for Children — Los Angeles for more than 10 years. He was born without an arm but he hasn’t let that stop him. He is a great speaker and an aspiring musician and plays the trumpet in a mariachi band. 
Brock Waidmann Brock Waidmann – 17, Brock has been a Shriners Hospital patient since he was 18 months old. He has spina bifida and has had more than 14 surgeries. He is pursuing a dream to become an actor and director. He’s been on two TV series on NBC and recently filmed a PSA for Shriners Hospitals Cut the Bull campaign. #CUTTHEBULL PSA
Jacob Robinson Jacob Robinson – 18, Jacob has been a patient at Shriners Hospitals for Children — Los Angeles since he was 3 years old. He is a fun-loving young man who uses a prosthetic leg. He has acted, been in anti-drug campaigns and is a Wilhelmina Model. 

Shriners Hospitals for Children provides advanced care for children with orthopaedic conditions, burns, spinal cord injuries, and cleft lip and palate regardless of the families’ ability to pay. Shriners Hospitals for Children is a proud participant of the annual 127th Roses Parade, and shares the organization’s passion for strengthening the personal empowerment and well-being of kids all around the world.

For more information on Shriners Hospitals for Children, please visit shrinershospitalsforchildren.org.

Shriners Hospitals for Children 2016 Float is number 66 in parade order.