Hillary with her siblings Haley, Dana, and Davis
  • The Hillary Fund was inspired by Hillary Grace Dilling, a special child of God with Down syndrome, who died in 1998 at age fourteen as a result of a truck-pedestrian accident. Hillary had a gift for loving everyone she met, and would greet others with a hug, sometimes a kiss, and then a handshake. Her name means “always cheerful,” and that is who Hillary was. She would smile and then tell her parents, “Jesus in my heart.” Hillary especially loved traveling and spending time with her family. Family vacations would include trips to SeaWorld, flying kites on the beach, visiting historic sites, taking walks, or just relaxing together—these were family refueling times for everyone. The Hillary Grace Dilling Memorial Fund was established to pass Hillary’s special love on to other individuals by creating opportunities for families to learn, play, re-fuel, and relax together. The Hillary Fund wishes to build up and support families so that they, too, can experience the love of “Jesus in my heart”.

Courtney’s Adventure

In March 2006, Courtney, a delightful girl from western Pennsylvania, flew to Orlando, FL with her parents for a Discovery Cove “Swim with the Dolphins” adventure. Courtney and her family spent one day swimming with the dolphins at Discovery Cove, and two days learning more about dolphins and other aquatic wildlife at SeaWorld Orlando. Courtney’s … Continue reading

Patricia’s Adventure

Patricia, a sunshiny young lady from Florida, traveled with her parents in 2003 to Discovery Cove, Orlando, FL, for an adventure with the dolphins and other sea creatures.  Patricia describes her trip in her own words: Dear Dillings, I had a wonderful time at the Discovery Cove.  These are the things I did:  swam with … Continue reading

Victoria’s Adventure

Victoria and her family also traveled on a dolphin adventure in 2001. They visited Inner Harbor and the National Aquarium in Baltimore, MD together during that summer. The photo at right, taken during their trip to Inner Harbor, features Victoria with her father Matthew and her brother Jacob. June 19, 2001 Dear Dillings and The Hillary … Continue reading

Chelsie riding a dolphin at Discovery Cove, Orlando, FL

Chelsie’s Adventure

Chelsie experienced the first of two dolphin trips awarded in 2001. With her grandparents and her sister, Chelsie traveled to Discovery Cove at SeaWorld, Orlando, FL. As is evident in the photo, Chelsie enjoyed her trip, which included a swim with the dolphins! May 2001 – Letter from Chelsie’s grandmother: Dr. and Mrs. Trudy Dilling … Continue reading

Jesse’s Adventure

Teenager Jesse received the second dolphin adventure trip provided by the Hillary Fund. Jesse and his family traveled from Pennsylvania to Key West, FL in July 2000. His trip included a boat ride with Capt. Sheri Sullenger, who leads chartered adventures to see dolphins in their natural environment. The Hillary Fund received this note from … Continue reading

Becky’s Adventure

The Hillary Fund’s first dolphin experience trip was awarded to Becky, a former classmate of Hillary. Becky and her family traveled to SeaWorld in Orlando, FL in June 1999. The Hillary Fund received this letter from Becky’s family after their trip: Dear Mr. & Mrs. Dilling, We want to thank you so much for thinking … Continue reading

Hillary with her siblings Haley, Dana, and Davis

Hillary – “Always Cheerful”

– As told by Hillary’s mom, Trudy Dilling – From the very beginning, Hillary belonged to God. She had been born with Down syndrome but unlike many other children with this condition, Hillary was a healthy baby. She was loving, cheerful and a joy to have as a daughter. Her love was unconditional. Even after … Continue reading