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Meet a few of the patients you can help during the Give-A-Thon for Phoenix Children’s Hospital

The 14th annual Give-A-Thon benefiting Phoenix Children’s Hospital takes place Wednesday and Thursday.

To help you can call 602-933-4567, go to ktar.net/pch/ or text PCH to 620620.

Or you can become a Monthly Miracle Maker. When you make a monthly pledge of $20 or more (or a single gift of $240 or more), a cuddly teddy bear will be given to a hospitalized patient in your name. Your gift will brighten a child’s day and help more kids receive the life-saving medical care they need at Phoenix Children’s Hospital. By becoming a Miracle Maker, you will also receive a choice of a pair of Phoenix Suns tickets, two free pizzas from Hungry Howie’s, or a $20 Walgreens gift card.

Meet some of the children you will be helping.

Tyler

Four-year-old toddler Tyler’s mom knew something was wrong before he was even diagnosed. Jennifer is a nurse with the oncology unit at PCH and became concerned when a pale Tyler seemed agitated and developed a bruise on his cheek. Tyler’s pediatrician ran tests. Fearing leukemia, he immediately recommended the boy be taken to PCH. Although she was thrown off being on the “other side of the bed,” Jennifer was comforted by the sight of her coworkers and friends banding together to help her son. Tyler has acute lymphoblastic leukemia and had been in and out of PCH for chemotherapy. He’s reached the maintenance stage of his condition so he’s able to receive oral chemotherapy at home.

Emma

At the tender age of 2½ years, Emma has already been through eight surgeries, her first when was two days old. Emma was born with cloacal exstrophy (exposed organs), bladder issues and clubbed foot. Her mom Jacque was referred to Dr. Kathleen Graziano at PCH. The NICU became their home away from home for the first three months of Emma’s life. Emma sees several PCH specialists and her parents credit the hospital with providing her with the best care available. The toddler loves to visit with PCH’s therapy dogs and just being a kid in the playrooms. Emma’s beaten the odds so far and PCH is determined to help her and her family as best as we can.

Jordan and Joshua

Twins Jordan and Joshua, 17, were diagnosed with the most severe form of sickle cell anemia when they were barely two weeks old. Sickle cell affects the shape of red blood cells and causes extreme pain and makes patients prone to strokes, joint trouble, organ problems and other illnesses. Lifespan for sickle cell patients is typically 23-43 years of age, but lower with their type since have the most severe form. With the help of bone marrow transplants from their brother Jonathan, they are now sickle cell free. Both boys live normal lives. They play sports, go to school, swim, and go on vacation.

Brett

Everything was fine with now 16-year-old Brett before last December. Then he started feeling tightness in his chest and could only sleep sitting up. His dad Scott and stepmom Carla first thought he had asthma but with a resting heart rate of 140 beats per minute, his doctor sent him to PCH. Brett was diagnosed with dilated cardiomyopathy and a life-threatening infection that meant he needed a heart transplant. Before Brett underwent transplant surgery on March 23, 2014, he was able to attend a spring training game with his transplant doctors from PCH’s Children’s Heart Center. The surgery went well and Brett is back in school for his junior year; he wants to work at PCH after college and become an advocate for organ donation. He and his family are extremely grateful to his donor and the donor’s family for Brett’s second chance at life. Brett keeps a letter from the donor’s family framed on his wall and hopes to meet them someday so they can listen to their son’s heart beating strongly in Brett’s chest.

Ty

Ten-year-old Ty had been having a headache and a fever when his family took him to the ER. After two days, he still couldn’t walk — doctors thought that he had meningitis. However, two MRIs and a spinal tap later, Dr. Condie diagnosed Tyler with autoimmune encephalitis, a condition in which the immune system was attacks the brain. He became paralyzed and mute. Ty spent a lot of time in the ICU seeing specialists. After much inpatient rehab, his speech and walking began to improve. His first words were, “Go get me a cookie.” He still needs the help of a full-time caregiver but is back in school and can walk and talk. He’s now in the fifth grade.

Trinity

At 2 months, Trinity was diagnosed with neuroblastoma. She would need two bone marrow transplants and eight rounds of chemotherapy. Trinity was in remission until last year, when the 11-year-old was diagnosed with osteosarcoma. Trinity returned to PCH for more chemotherapy and the removal of her femur. She’s in remission again and is undergoing therapy to walk on her leg. She has even been able to attend Camp Rainbow (camp for kids who have or had cancer or chronic blood disorder) and loves connecting with other patients who have gone through similar experiences.

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