How One Family’s Tragic Story Means Hope for Other Oklahoma Babies
The Leslies learned that their unborn daughter, Audrey Claire Leslie, had several heart abnormalities that resulted in a rare congenital heart defect. She also had a fluid-filled cyst in her cerebellum, which kept that part of her brain from developing normally.
Miraculously, Audrey was born on May 27, 2014, at only 4 pounds, 3 ounces.
She fought for every breath, assisted by an oxygen machine and a team of doting doctors, nurses, and family.
At four weeks of age, Audrey underwent emergency open-heart surgery under the skilled hands of Dr. Harold Burkhart at Children’s Hospital. She still had many obstacles to overcome after surgery, but she slowly improved.
Children’s Hospital sees kids like Audrey every day. They brave some of the toughest battles of their lives—tumors, birth defects, genetic disorders, cancer.
Children’s Hospital does everything possible to ensure that these kids win the fight.
What’s raised in Oklahoma stays in Oklahoma
Because of Children’s Hospital and its skilled physicians, annual patient visits top 222,000. Those children receive attentive, specialized care. Few communities can support a comprehensive children’s hospital, and the highly specialized programs supported by Children’s Hospital Foundation.
The support from Children’s Hospital Foundation helps recruit and retain nationally and internationally recognized pediatric physician-scientists like Dr. Burkhart, who helped Audrey.
The foundation supports pediatric research and testing programs which escalates care to the next level.
This ensures that children from all 77 counties have access to top pediatric specialists. And they don’t have to leave the state to get it.
Generous support also allows Children’s Hospital Foundation to continue to improve and provide the best possible care for Oklahoma’s children.
Unfortunately, Audrey did not recover. After 81 purposeful, love-filled days, Audrey took her last hard-fought breath. Her family said, “She earned her
Audrey touched thousands of lives in a short time. Because of her, Audrey’s parents and grandparents plan to raise $100,000 to create the Wings for Audrey endowment through Children’s Hospital Foundation. The funds will help care for other families’ babies.
Generous donations also help provide the specialty physicians, training, and programs that help kids like Children’s 2016 Champion Child, Gabe. Without such specialized care, Gabe would have had a much tougher time recovering from a liver tumor. Doctors removed nearly two thirds of the two-year-old’s liver.wings.”
During his recovery at home, he suffered jaundice and high fevers. After an additional surgery to reroute his bile ducts, Gabe recovered fully. Now tumor-free, Gabe wants to be a monster truck driver when he grows up. One-time and monthly donations make a difference. Sponsorship opportunities also generate critical funds for the hospital and research center.
From attending the Starlight Ball to participating in the Wings to Fly Run, there are many ways to support Children’s Hospital Foundation. And with what it receives, Children’s gives back multifold by improving the lives of soon-to-be healthy, happy kids.