I started running marathons when my son Kane was diagnosed with a congenital heart defect. Running helped me keep a clear mind while going through the most difficult time in our lives. I chose to run the Boston marathon on the "Miles for Miracles" team because I personally experienced all of the amazing work Boston Children's Hospital does for kids and their families.
Boston Children's Hospital is home to over 1,400 researchers who are dedicated to this mission. Every dollar that I raise will help fund a specific research study lead by one of these exceptional researchers, Dr. John Kheir. Dr. Kheir was Kane’s CICU physician and took amazing care of Kane and my family after enduring three open-heart surgeries at Boston Children's Hospital. It was during this time I learned about his dedication toward CHD research; Specifically conducting research with the use of hydrogen gas as a neuroprotective agent to mitigate brain injury for children who undergo open heart surgery.
As a parent of a child with CHD, I signed dozens of consent forms for various cardiac interventions and procedures. I was aware of the risks associated with brain injury each time Kane went on bypass and had anesthesia. Unfortunately, we didn't have a choice with Kane, he needed multiple heart surgeries for a chance to survive and thrive. As his mom, I would sign his consent forms, cry, and pray. Unfortunately, after Kane's fifth open-heart surgery, Dr. Kheir had to deliver devastating news to me. This is the moment I learned that our little boy would never return to us. Kane suffered a severe brain injury, one that he may have been able to survive with the use of hydrogen gas. The hydrogen gas study remains in it's final stages of testing and wasn't ready for Kane. Kane passed away on January 16th, 2016.
This particular research study is deeply personal and I will do everything in my power to raise the additional funding needed to get both myself and Dr. Kheir's hydrogen gas study across the finish line. By helping fund Dr. Kheir's research we are all helping give hope and better outcomes to children who endure open- heart surgeries. You can help turn my 26.2 miles into miracles for kids and help us achieve our mission "Until every child is well".