You can be a HERO for children and families struggling with the burden of illness and injury.
It is my honor and privilege to share with you an important new resource for those who turn to McLeod Children’s Hospital in times of need. The HERO (Help Eliminate and Remove Obstacles) Fund is aptly named and has been established to meet many of the pressing needs children and their families face while receiving care.
As a dedicated donor to the Children’s Hospital, I ask for your support of this most critical fund.
Your gift in support of the HERO Fund will be used to bridge the gap for children and their families who are experiencing financial struggles while being cared for at McLeod Children’s Hospital. As these needs are often immediate, the HERO Fund Coordinator will screen and approve referrals received from the Children’s Hospital staff without delay.
My husband, Cheney and I learned of the HERO Fund following the loss of our beloved granddaughter, Henley Faith Meiere.
Henley was born on May 7, 2004 with severe disabilities and our family began a journey of care, love and joy for our special child. In 2015, she came to live with us in Florence. We were blessed by compassionate and professional physicians and staff who valued and supported our desire to care for Henley in our home.
Despite her many challenges and fragile state, we were able to care for her at home because specialized assistance was available. Dr. Patrice Minter and Dr. Al Gilpin, along with a team of respiratory specialists and McLeod Rehabilitation staff, became our heroes as they provided extraordinary care to Henley. Upon their recommendation, she was also able to obtain a specialized wheelchair. This chair was invaluable to her comfort and even had an arm for her i-Pad. You see, while Henley had limited vision, she loved listening to her favorite music (like Raffi’s “Baby Beluga”) on the i-Pad which soothed and comforted her.
However, in the fall of 2018, we had to rush Henley to McLeod Regional Medical Center by ambulance. She had developed a case of life-threatening pneumonia. Through this frightening six-day stay, the team in the McLeod Children’s Hospital saved her life. While staying with her throughout her battle, I was continually impressed that all who provided her care respected her dignity as they tenderly served every need.
We returned home and added to our loving memories until Henley passed away the following August at the age of 15.
When our family learned of the establishment of the HERO Fund, we decided to direct Henley’s memorial gifts to this noble effort. I was also honored when asked to serve on the first HERO Fund Advisory Committee to help guide this important work.
We were blessed to be able to provide for Henley’s needs; however, there are many families who face financial struggles when their children have health problems.
Because of this, I ask for your support and hope that you will send your personal gift and be a HERO for a child.
As you are considering this appeal, I would like to share a story about a young family that was helped by the HERO Fund in the last few months.
A precious 15-month-old boy from Darlington County was admitted after his bilateral club foot repair. His casts were on both legs from his toes all the way to his hips. The health care team suggested a wagon to aid in his recovery for both transportation and a more comfortable place to sit. A stroller and highchair would allow the legs to dangle, causing much discomfort. Both parents work for a local nursing facility but did not have the means to purchase the wagon.
The HERO Fund was immediately available to purchase the wagon for this family, in part because of those who remembered Henley. While there are already many other stories of children helped by the HERO Fund, this one touched my heart because Henley had this surgery, too.
Your gift to the HERO Fund will help by providing specialized equipment for babies going home from the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit (NICU). It will also provide clothing for children who are victims of trauma or abuse, specialized car seats for children with disabilities as well as pediatric medications and supplies.
My family and I love and miss Henley every day and we learned so much from her. One of the important lessons is that you never know what tomorrow may bring.
We were blessed that McLeod Health, since the hospital’s founding in 1906, has focused on pediatric healthcare. Donors helped fund the first Children’s Hospital, and we anxiously await the opening of the new NICU this spring, also funded by generous gifts. We are grateful for dedicated supporters, like you, who prioritize children’s health.
I know you would immediately help if you saw a child in need. The HERO Fund is the vehicle to ensure that your gift is put to the best use when it is needed most for that child.
Thank you for caring, and my family and I hope you will join us by making your personally meaningful donation.
Grandmother and HERO Advisory Committee Member
P.S. Please give today as you count your blessings. You will be a child’s HERO. Click here to support the HERO Fund.