My Nationwide Children's Hospital Columbus Marathon & 1/2 Marathon Fundraising Page!
Hometown: Hilliard, Ohio
Age on Race Day: 3
Diagnosis: Down syndrome
Megan and Jason never imagined that they would be rushing their five-day-old son, Charlie, to the Emergency Department at Nationwide Children’s Hospital, only to learn that he would need lifesaving surgery.
Charlie’s pancreas was wrapped around his small intestine, causing a partial blockage in his digestive tract. He was losing oxygen and becoming hypothermic, with his body temperature continuing to drop. Charlie spent a grueling 30 days recovering in the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit (NICU) at Nationwide Childrens after undergoing surgery.
“Some days were filled with hope, and other days fear and uncertainty. Yet, the compassion, kindness and care of each staff member brought comfort during a rollercoaster of emotions,” says Megan, Charlie’s mother.
While Charlie had fully recovered from his surgery, he was also born with Down syndrome, a lifelong diagnosis. Charlie’s family learned of his Down syndrome when Megan was just 19 weeks pregnant with him. They rely on the medical care from a variety of services at Nationwide Children’s to give Charlie the best quality of life possible, including physical therapy, speech therapy, ear nose and throat (ENT), endocrinology, cardiology, surgery and the Down syndrome clinic.
“Nationwide Children's Hospital has been an integral part of our journey as new parents. During our 30-day stay in the NICU, we saw compassion integrated across the hospital, from the head of surgery to the custodial staff. There were many sleepless nights, skipped meals, and moments when we were simply running on empty. Fortunately, the staff understands that parents need looked out for, too. From showers & laundry services to complimentary pizza night, the hospital seeks out ways to alleviate the stressors of fulfilling basic needs. Nationwide Children’s Hospital saved our child’s life and my family is committed for the rest of ours to give back to an organization that means so much to us,” says Megan.
Charlie is a social butterfly and extends his joy and happiness to anyone he meets. He loves music and is fascinated with sports, especially hockey, soccer and basketball. Like many toddlers, he dislikes fruits and veggies. He may be petite – but he has a huge personality!
Keep an eye out for Charlie on race day where you will find him sharing his smiles, sense of humor and funny faces with all the runners and walkers of the Nationwide Children’s Hospital Columbus Marathon & ½ Marathon.
Help kids like Charlie by making a donoation today!
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