2021 Cleveland Congenital Heart Walk

Kota's Krusaders

Our team is raising critical funds for congenital heart defects! Congenital heart defects are the most commonly occurring birth defect, affecting approximately 1 in 110 babies born, or a child born every 15 minutes. Congenital heart defects are the leading cause of birth-defect related mortality. 


On July 13th, 2020, our little warrior Dakota came into the world. We knew he was going to be born with a heart defect but what we didn’t know was the extent of challenges we would all endure. While we did get a chance to hold him briefly before he was whisked away to the PICU, it was still a hard pill to swallow that we wouldn’t have our newborn near us and would have to make what seemed like a never ending walk to get from the maternity ward to the PICU to see our sweet boy. The next morning when we went to see him, he had multiple IVs, umbilical lines and we couldn’t hold him. He had declined overnight and they needed to step in. For the first 15 days of his life we spent it in the hospital where during that time he went for a procedure to have a stent placed to ensure enough blood was reaching his lungs. Over the course of the next 1 1/2-2 months, he seemed to be doing really well, until he wasn’t. A day after he turned 2 months old we were rushed back to the PICU at Cleveland Clinic Children's Hospital. His battle with his congenital heart defect has been a scary one. Needing open heart surgery and a pacemaker by 3 months old while having many scares that we could lose him along the way during our 2 month hospital stay.  We met many families that have similar stories to ours and some that their warriors gained their wings. Through funding and research The Children’s Heart Foundation will give children and their families a chance to lead more normal lives. 

Please help us to fund CHD research by making a donation to my personal fundraising page. Together we can make a life-saving difference!


Funded research is making a very big difference in the lives of CHD patients, helping to reduce incidences and increase survival, longevity and quality of life. Research has made a very big impact, and with survival and longevity increasing, even more research is needed to help address lifelong challenges that CHD patients will face. Every dollar in support of The Children’s Heart Foundation helps to further their mission: to fund the most promising research to advance the diagnosis, treatment, and prevention of congenital heart defects.

Please support our team, join us for the Congenital Heart Walk, or both!

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