Saturday, June 29th, 2013
A 5K Run dedicated to our son Colum.
Bring the entire family and join the fun for a great cause. All proceeds go to help another child in need.
Where: American Fork Rec Center
454 N Center St.
American Fork, UT 84003
View 5K run course
When: Saturday, June 29th, 2013
Start time 8:30 am
Packet pickup 7:00-8:30 am day of race (Saturday) at start area
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On Christmas Eve '11 our family was driving home from a family Christmas party when tragedy struck. A 55 year old man was driving a Suburban and jumped a 3 foot tall median and hit our car head on. He was driving roughly 60mph and we later found out he was under the influence of crystal meth. Three out of the four of us were critically injured and life flighted to U of U hospital. Luckily our 3 now 4 year old barely had a scratch.
Why We Do It
We had so many people reach out to help us in so many ways, and it has saved us from financial ruin. We want to give back by helping families who are also in a difficult situation like we were put in. We miss our baby everyday. He also is a hero for we donated his heart to help save somebody else's child's life. He brought so much joy to our family. We want to turn his Birthday into a happy event that we can look forward to and be able to help out another family each year.
A Precious Life Lost
Unfortunately, our precious 18 month old son, Colum's injuries were so severe that they were inoperable and we had to take him off life support on Christmas Day. My Husband and I attended the funeral service at the Chapel at the hospital and were unable to attend the burial. We both had to re-learn to walk and are still struggling from complications from our injuries on top of grieving our son. A week or two following the accident we found out that the man who hit us had no insurance and all the financial stresses were on our shoulders.
This year we chose Norah Gunnell.
Norah Gunnell was born on July 27, 2011 with an extremely rare skeletal dysplasia. Though there are many complications with this defect, her family's primary concern right now is her breathing. Norah received her tracheostomy when she was a fragile six weeks old. Now at 17 months old, she has spent all but a scant two weeks of her life living in the hospital, dependent on an ICU-only ventilator.
Norah is Special
Like so many other medically fragile children, Norah can't be defined by her dependencies or her limitations. Everyone that meets her agrees that she is the bravest girl they have ever met. She has an old soul that simply radiates love. Despite her challenges, Norah works so hard at what comes so easily to others. She is smart, sassy, full of life, and teaches everyone about how to live with hope and optimism.
Norah's family is fully engaged in her care; they have never missed a single day at with their sweet princess while she lives at either South Davis Community Hospital, or Primary Children's Pediatric ICU where she is the unit's celebrity. Norah loves to kick back with her daddy Jeff, cuddle with her mama Shauna, and play with her brother Harper (age 4). Aside from the obvious medical stresses, this family's biggest challenge is balancing a life divided between home and the hospital. Their next milestone will be for Norah to grow big and strong enough to tolerate a home ventilator full-time so she can come home.
Blessings and Prayers Answered
This new life has taught the Gunnells about love, family, and perseverance. They are grateful for the support they've received from family, friends, and strangers alike. But most of all, they're grateful for Norah, who has held onto life even in the darkest of times.