Children's Miracle Network Features Blake Roberts

Contact: Amanda White

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“When you go through a tragic incident like this, you just don’t realize how important it is to have a good family that you can depend on. We are just thankful that everything went exactly as it did. From our neighbor who first helped us with Blake to Clark Regional and then ultimately to UK Children’s Hospital, we are thankful for everyone involved who played a part in Blake’s well-being today. Especially, we had continuous support from our church and other churches in the community. It just makes you feel so blessed.”

-- Susan Roberts,
Blake Roberts' mother

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"Hospital Benefits from CMN Celebration"

LEXINGTON, Ky. (June 16, 2004) -- Blake Roberts, 9, son of Bobby and Susan Roberts, of Winchester, will be featured as a “champion” during the 2004 Children’s Miracle Network Celebration June 18 and 19.

Blake and a friend were riding bicycles last August when he turned his handlebar quickly and the bike fell over. Blake landed full-force on the handlebar, striking his abdomen.

Blake went from being a healthy child to having a potentially life-threatening injury in a matter of seconds.

“Blake was in immediate pain, was crying, and could not breathe,” his father said.

Blake’s parents took him to a local hospital where it was determined that he may have had an internal injury. He was immediately transferred to University of Kentucky Children’s Hospital where doctors operated on Blake to find and repair the damage.

“Blake had injury to his small bowel and the muscle to his abdominal wall,” said Joseph A. Iocono, M.D., assistant professor, UK Division of Pediatric Surgery. “His injury; if not properly diagnosed and treated quickly, would have been life-threatening.”

During the initial surgery, an injury to his intestines was found and a section of his bowel had to be removed. Also, a traumatic hernia (injury to his abdominal muscles) was discovered and a second procedure was performed to repair it.

“Injuries like this are more common than one might think,” Iocono said. “What happened to Blake could potentially happen to anyone. In fact, we see similar injuries two to three times a month during the summer at UK Children’s Hospital.”

While in the hospital, Blake was able to visit with friends and family, but missed his dog Ellie. His grandfather took pictures of her for Blake to enjoy during his stay.

After spending a week at UK Children’s Hospital waiting for his bowels to start functioning again, Blake was able to go home.

“When you go through a tragic incident like this, you just don’t realize how important it is to have a good family that you can depend on,” his mother said. “ We are just thankful that everything went exactly as it did. From our neighbor who first helped us with Blake to Clark Regional and then ultimately to UK Children’s Hospital, we are thankful for everyone involved who played a part in Blake’s well-being today. Our other children’s lives had to go on even though we were spending our time at the hospital and our family made that possible. We received support and prayers from friends and people in the community, even people we did not know well. Friends opened their homes and continually offered their time. Especially, we had continuous support from our church and other churches in the community. It just makes you feel so blessed.”

Blake’s accident did not cause him to give up bike riding.

“He’s back, he was even saying in the hospital that he was ready to go out again, which is kind of mind boggling,” his mother said.

Blake has three older siblings, Kristian, Bobby and Ashley West Roberts. He attends Providence Elementary in Winchester. He enjoys all sports and played basketball on an organized team this past season.

Blake and other children will be recognized as “champions” during the Children’s Miracle Network Celebration, which will be broadcast June 18 and 19 from Applebee’s Park in Lexington on WKYT-TV, channel 27 (Lexington), and WYMT-TV, channel 57 (Hazard). Co-hosts are Barbara Bailey and Bill Bryant of WKYT-TV, and Stacy McCloud of 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 Celebration will be broadcast from 8 to 11 p.m. Friday, June 18, and from 10:30 a.m. to 10 p.m. Saturday, June 19.

During televised hours of the celebration, call toll-free (877) 862-5444 to make a donation. To make a donation before or after the Celebration is broadcast, or to receive more information about the Children’s Miracle Network, call (859) 257-1121.


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