Listeners to this year's 94.7 WMAS Radiothon on March 7 and 8 to benefit Baystate Children's Hospital will hear a number of heartwarming and often emotional stories about our "miracle" children like Brendan McDonald.
During a routine ultrasound, Brendan's parents learned that their son was going to be born with a significant congenital heart defect – news that would frighten any expecting parent. Brendan was diagnosed with L-TGA, VSD (L-Type Transposition of the Great Arteries and a Ventricular Sepal Defect) – essentially, he was born with a hole in his heart and his heart ventricles and arteries were reversed.
Within the first months of his young life, Brendan went into heart failure and was rushed to Baystate Children’s Hospital where he was cared for by his pediatric cardiologist team. He later underwent open-heart surgery at Boston Children’s Hospital at the age of four months and returned to Baystate Children’s Hospital for care following complications from his surgery. Throughout his childhood, Brendan has continued to experience heart arrhythmias. Now at age 11, he is monitored closely by his beloved doctor, Dr. Anna Tsirka, and specialists, including his favorite cardiology technician, Sam Stoughton at Baystate Children’s Hospital and the Baystate Children’s Specialty Center. Click here to view a video of Brendan and Sam!
A Record Breaker
“Brendan and other children cared for at Baystate Children’s Hospital truly benefit from the generosity of those pledging their support to the only accredited, full-service children’s hospital in western Massachusetts,” said Jane Albert, vice president of philanthropy, Baystate Health, and executive director of the Baystate Health Foundation.
Hitting the Airwaves
94.7 FM WMAS on-air personalities - led by the Kellogg Krew of Chris, Dina, and Lopez - will again continue this year with their regular radio formats throughout the day, interspersed with live and taped interviews featuring young patients and their families, as well as community donors and staff from Baystate Children’s Hospital. They will be asking listeners to help celebrate the Radiothon’s 16 years of making miracles happen for kids by calling in donations to phone banks at the hospital. Broadcast hours for the Radiothon will be from 6 a.m. to 6 p.m.
Put Your Money Where the Miracles Are
Listeners will have an opportunity during the Radiothon to join the Miracle Maker Club, a recurring pledge of at least $15 per month on a credit card or a one-time annual donation of $180 or more. Thanks to Cartamundi, the official Miracle Maker Sponsor, when listeners become a member of the club, a toy or game will be delivered in their name to a young patient at Baystate Children’s Hospital.
Those wanting to become a Change Hero to help kick-off fundraising efforts for the Radiothon can register to create their own fundraising web page. Change Heroes who turn in their funds by March 31 and raise $100 or more will have an opportunity to win a special prize.
The Heart of a Champion
As for how Brendan is managing today, the good news is that he is flourishing. Even with his health challenges, Brendan is an athlete who loves hockey and the Boston Bruins. When asked about the future, Brendan and his family look forward to a “healthy year full of sporting events, activities and trips to the beach!”
For more information on the Radiothon, visit baystatehealth.org/radiothon or call 413-794-1486. To call-in your donation during the broadcast, dial 413-794-1111 from 6 a.m. to 6 p.m. on Tuesday, march 7 and Wednesday, March 8.