“Bound for Bosnia,” Ensign, Sept. 1996, 68–69
When Carol Gray of Sheffield, England, saw images on television of Croatian and Bosnian women dragging their children to safety, she wept tears of frustration. “I knew I had to do something,” she says.
At the time, Sister Gray was president of her ward Relief Society, so she asked the sisters for help. Before long, members had collected 38 tons of food, milk, and winter clothes, which Sister Gray and some helpers took to war-torn Bosnia themselves. Since that first trip three years ago, she has returned to Croatia and Bosnia 21 more times to deliver medical and dental equipment and school supplies. She has also provided cows and chickens and arranged for surgeons to perform operations and teach.
“I know that doors and even the heavens have opened to help me,” Sister Gray says. Preparing for a trip to take Christmas presents to children in three orphanages, she realized the expedition lacked funds to cover some costs of the return trip. “But the children were waiting for us,” she recalls, “so I said we must use our faith.” When the convoy stopped in Germany, she was handed a brown envelope that she thought contained letters. However, when she opened the envelope later on the road, she found enclosed the exact number of deutsche marks needed to cover fuel costs.
Carol pours time and energy into this effort not only out of compassion for war victims but also because, as a cancer survivor, she has an increased appreciation for life. “When you are so close to death, and you’re spared, you live 24 hours in every day,” she says. Now she is presently preparing to assist with water supplies in Somalia and orphanages in Africa.