Smithville mom named 'Sunniest Person in America' - KCTV5

Smithville mom named 'Sunniest Person in America'

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SMITHVILLE, MO (KCTV) -

A Smithville woman who is granting wishes to strangers with life-threatening illnesses is now the "Sunniest Person in America."

Lara Stanze beat out contestants from around the country who were nominated for an Ocean Spray Sun-sational Award that honored people who give back to their community.

She started the non-profit organization Spread a Little Joy Foundation after she lost her mother to cancer.

Before her mother died, Stanze asked her mother to list three wishes.

The family granted those wishes including a trip to the Oprah Show, swimming with dolphins and going on a cruise.

Stanze thought giving her mother something to look forward to kept her mother alive longer.

She decided to start a foundation to grant wishes to other people who are fighting for their lives.

Someone noticed her good deeds and nominated her for the Ocean Spray contest.

KCTV5 viewers and people around the country voted to put Stanze in the top spot.

She now gets an all-expense paid trip to anywhere in the United States.

Stanze said she is used to planning surprise vacations for strangers and their families.  Although, she said she is excited for her all-expense-paid trip.

She is most thankful for the national exposure for Spread a Little Joy Foundation and hopes that exposure will help her grant even more wishes for people with life-threatening illnesses.

For more information on Spread A Little Joy Foundation, click here.

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