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SOMERSET BOY TO BE FEATURED
ON CHILDREN'S MIRACLE NETWORK SHOW

By Tammy Gay

 

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"I touched his hand and arm and I thought it was going to be the only time I would see my baby alive."

-- April Callahan,
mother of 3-year-old Brady Callahan.

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May 24, 2002 (Lexington, Ky.) -- Brady Callahan, who will be 3 in July, son of April and Billy Callahan, of Somerset, will be featured as a "champion" during the "2002 Children's Miracle Network Celebration" on May 31-June 1. The annual television fund-raiser benefits the University of Kentucky Children's Hospital.

"Champion" is an appropriate term for Brady, who survived life-threatening odds when he entered the world 13 weeks early. April Callahan only saw her son for a brief moment before he was airlifted from Somerset to the University of Kentucky Children's Hospital Neonatal Intensive Care Unit (NICU).

"I touched his hand and arm and I thought it was going to be the only time I would see my baby alive," April said.

Brady was a very sick premature baby. Before he even arrived at UK, he had to be resuscitated.

"When Brady arrived, he was very sick," said Nirmala Desai, M.D., neonatologist at the UK Children's Hospital and professor of pediatrics, University of Kentucky College of Medicine. "We really anticipated severe problems - cerebral palsy or severe mental retardation. We were not even sure if he was going to make it or not."

During his two-month stay in the NICU, the Callahans were told several times their baby might not survive.

However, April and Billy Callahan were able to take their first child home. In December, Brady was discharged from UK's developmental clinic and his parents were told he was developing at a normal rate with no severe problems or delays.

Brady and other children will be recognized as "champions" during the "Children's Miracle Network Celebration," which will be broadcast May 31-June 1 from Fayette Mall in Lexington on WKYT-TV, channel 27 (Lexington) and WYMT-TV, channel 57 (Hazard). Co-hosts are Barbara Bailey and Bill Bryant, WKYT-TV, and Tony Turner, WYMT-TV. During the broadcast, the program will feature and celebrate the triumphs of UK's young patients and the health issues they are facing. The annual program will not only recognize the children as champions, but also the many people who champion children, such as families, health professionals, individuals, volunteers and donors. The broadcast Celebration begins at 8 p.m. Friday, May 31, and will continue through 11 p.m. On Saturday, June 1, the Celebration continues at 10 a.m. and ends at 6 p.m. During the broadcast, there will be a silent auction at Fayette Mall, which also benefits the UK Children's Hospital.

The University of Kentucky Children's Hospital is the local beneficiary for the 15th year of the annual Children's Miracle Network campaign to raise money for 170 children's hospitals across North America. All proceeds raised in Kentucky stay in Kentucky to benefit the UK Children's Hospital, the only participating hospital in the state. In the past 15 years, CMN has raised more than $7.5 million for the UK Children's Hospital. Last year through CMN, Kentuckians gave $1,052,000 to UK Children's Hospital, reaching the Hospital's $1 million fund-raising goal.

For more information about the Children's Miracle Network Celebration and the auction or how to donate to the UK Children's Hospital, call (859) 257-1121.


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