The Joy of Jacob
Jacob Andrew Schriber Ball was so tiny at birth, his neonatologist cradled the infant in the palm of his hand.
Born with double-congenital heart disease, Jacob also suffered from seizures, never spoke verbally, and was autistic. In 2013, Jacob passed away at age 12, following a series of health issues.
Always small for his age, Jacob’s joyful impact on those around him was huge. Fascinated with other people’s hands, Jacob was known to reach for, and study, the hands of strangers. He also had a habit of rolling the hem of his shirt neatly into a coil. It’s fitting then, that his mother, Tiffany Schriber Ball, wears a charm around her neck that bears the imprint of one of Jacob’s fingertips.
Jacob, who attended Glenwood Leadership Academy, was an enthusiastic and lifelong fan of the music and adventures of Jay Jay the Jet Plane, an animated character on PBS. Shortly after his death, Tiffany, her husband Brian and her parents Sue and Jack, sought to find a way to keep Jacob’s spirited joy alive. The Jacob Ball Wish Fund was created in honor of Jacob to benefit special needs children. Donations allow the organization to fund “wishes” that provide special needs students with the experiences and developmental skill builders that would otherwise be unavailable to them.
On Oct. 4, 2013, Tiffany posted this message on her Facebook page:
Today was a very special day for the Ball/Schriber Family as we were part of Maryellen Lewis classroom at Glenwood Leadership Academy getting the first Jacob Andrew Schriber Ball Wish! AMAZING!! The Joy & Spirit of our precious Jacob were so very present in that room today. Thank you to so many people that helped us share in the Joy of Jacob.