Millsboro tot takes $10,000 prize

Londyn Ridley wins Gerber photo contest
Kelley Ridley holds 14-month-old Londyn after learning the Millsboro toddler won $10,000 in the Gerber Generation Photo Contest. BY RACHEL SWICK MAVITY
November 21, 2012

Fourteen-month-old Londyn Ridley of Millsboro topped 30,000 tots from across the nation to win $10,000 in the Gerber Generation Photo Contest.

The online contest drew more than 308,000 photos, and winners were announced earlier this month in New York City.

Londyn was one of six milestone winners – one from each age group – who won $10,000 in the form of a education scholarship through Gerber's Grow Up plan. The grand prize winner from California won $50,000.

"Everyone always tells me how cute she is, so when I saw the contest online, I took at shot at it," said Kelley Ridley, Londyn's mom. "I didn't think she would win."

The win helped ease concerns for Ridley's future.

For two months before Londyn was born, her father, Jason, underwent chemotherapy treatments for a rare form of lymphoma.  He died Sept. 27, 2011, at the age of 32, just two days before Londyn was born.

Jason seemed to be getting better, and was expected to recover, Kelley Ridley said.. "But his immune system was so weak from the chemo," she said. "It was so unexpected."

Londyn's family came together to support the young mother and child. It was through their support, the support of Jason's family's business - John Lorraine European Hair in Rehoboth - and clients, friends and coworkers of Ridley's at Delmarva Christian School, that Londyn garnered enough votes to win in her age group.

"Things have been so rough since Jason died," Ridley said, "This award will make the future a bit easier because I know money is there for her to go to college."

Ridley said when Londyn goes out with her grandparents, they like to tout her  as a Gerber baby. While excited about Londyn,'s win, Ridley said she isn't planning to enter Londyn in any more contests.

"I have a lot of support. I know I couldn't do everything without all the people around us," Ridley said. "This award is really a blessing."

Ridley, a member of Lewes Church of Christ, said she has been amazed with the outpouring of love she received from the community.

"We have been making it because there is a lot of love out there," Ridley said. "I will see Jason again someday, but for now this is how God is looking out for me."



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