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PIN OA K 201 8

H ONORED H E R O E S

P I N OA K HO NOR E D H E ROE S –2 0 1 8 LI L A

6 YEARS OLD

Lila is your typical 6-year-old who is very active and loves being outdoors. When she began to complain of pain in her leg, her mom, Ashley, thought Lila had sprained her ankle. When the pain became more severe and she no longer wanted to walk—Ashley knew something was wrong. After a trip to an emergency room, where Lila was running a high fever, she was diagnosed with subacute osteomyelitis of the right ankle and tibia. This meant she had an infection in her bone, and surgery was the only treatment option. Ashley immediately took her daughter to Texas Children’s Hospital.

GAVY N

4 YEARS OLD

After 4-year-old Gavyn spent a fun day outside jumping on his trampoline, he told his mom, Jennifer, that his knee was hurting. Gavyn was a very healthy child, and Jennifer thought it was nothing more than an injury from jumping, but she took him to the doctor just to be safe. Gavyn did have a fracture, but even after a cast was put on his leg, the pain increased. Then he stopped walking. Jennifer quickly took her son to Texas Children’s Hospital, where they received news that would forever change their lives. Gavyn was diagnosed with leukemia and needed to begin chemotherapy right away. The leukemia had caused his

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bones to become weak, which caused the fracture. Jennifer is now thankful for the trampoline injury, because it led doctors to catch Gavyn’s cancer in the early stages. “The support from Texas Children’s and the Child Life department through everything was amazing,” Jennifer said. “They not only helped Gavyn, but also helped his sisters understand what was happening with their little brother.” After 30 days of treatment, Gavyn is now in remission and is back to enjoying what he loves—video games, robots and playing with his two sisters, Devyn and Avery.

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Lila needed four surgeries to completely clear the infection in her leg and ankle. She spent 32 days in the hospital recovering and never once let her diagnosis bring her down. “Lila was so strong and would comfort me through every procedure,” Ashley said. “She is amazing, and she is truly my hero.” Lila still visits Texas Children’s Hospital West Campus for check-ups and physical therapy, and she enjoys seeing all the friends she made during her time there. Inspired by the care she received, Lila wants to be a doctor when she grows up so she can “fix people too.”

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