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Katie Grace needs a new heart & lungs.
Cole runs with his 2 donors.
Ben received a new heart.

 

2011 DEDICATIONS TO KATIE GRACE, COLE AND BEN

THROUGH ORGANS R US ("ORU"), THE RELAY PROMOTES DONATION
Since 1995, the transfer of the baton from runner to runner symbolizes the transfer of an organ from donor to recipient.

KATIE GRACE'S BODY RUNS A MARATHON DAILY TO SURVIVE
When she was eleven days old, Katie Grace Groebner (born July 16, 2002) of Mankato, MN, began fainting. At age three, Katie Grace developed a heart murmur that doctors said she would outgrow. In February 2008, tests showed that Katie Grace had pulmonary hypertension curable only by a heart lung transplant. In August 2008, the Groebners moved to Clayton, CA, to began treatment at Stanford Hospital. Although Katie Grace receives medication by vein 24 hours a day, she will cheer runners and walkers at The Relay finish.

COLE CELEBRATES WITH A DRINK
Before his birth (May 19,1998 in Lafayette, CA), Cole Combi's kidneys were damaged by an obstructed urethra. After receiving a kidney from his mom, Carla, on June 2, 1999, Cole drank three liters most days. Cole rejected this kidney at age ten and began dialysis. Although a stranger to Cole, Warren Heffelinger (also of Lafayette, CA) donated a kidney to him on March 23, 2009. Cole is drinking a lot of chocolate milk and gatorade. Cole will run across the finish with team Drink Cole, which includes his two kidney donors.

BEN RUNS CODE THREE
When he was two, Ben Thornton (born October 5, 2002) of Santa Rosa, CA , complained of back pain and had difficulty walking. Doctors were baffled for months until a chest x-ray in March 2006 showed an enlarged heart. Ben had restrictive cardiomyopathy and suffered a cardiac arrest in May 2006 requiring ECMO for seven days. A Berlin Heart kept Ben alive until August 3, 2006, when he received a heart transplant. Since 2007, Ben has crossed The Relay finish with his team 911 We Run Code Three.

ORU RELAYS THE MESSAGE BY GENERATING PUBLICITY WORTH $25 MILLION
promoting donation through The Relay and other events. Discuss your wishes regarding organ donation with your family. Solicit online donations and request tax deductible matching funds from your employer for ORU.

HELP SAVE 18 AMERICANS WHO DIE EVERYDAY WAITING FOR ORGANS
In the long run, organ donation saves lives.

 
   
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