More than 800 people came together to raise $1.2 million at the 27th annual Cleveland Clinic Children’s gala held on Saturday, May 6, at the Hilton Cleveland Downtown.
The funds raised at the event will help advance pediatric research, which is critical to promoting health, training caregivers and transforming patient care for the future.
“As physicians, our mission is to help transform the lives of pediatric patients. And it all begins with research,” said Giovanni Piedimonte, M.D., chairman of Cleveland Clinic Children’s. “The generosity of gala attendees and other community members ultimately helps us save lives.”
This year’s inspiring celebration – presented by the Cleveland Cavaliers – also recognized Maisie Nowlin, 7, of Lakewood and Breanna Sprenger, 16, of Avon with Courage Awards.
- Maisie: In 2015, Maisie was diagnosed with rare bone marrow failure disease called Very Severe Aplastic Anemia (VSAA). She underwent immunosuppressant therapy – which eventually failed – so her next hope was to undergo a bone marrow transplant. It took months to find a bone marrow match, but the “miracle” came in early 2016. Despite enduring frequent scans, missing out on school and activities, and facing a number of life-threatening situations, this young fighter never allows her illness to take away her spark.
- Breanna: Breanna was born with no legs and only one arm and endured 16 surgeries in the first eight years of her life. She’s now a U.S. Paralympic swimmer and has represented Team USA at two international competitions. With college just around the corner, this ambitious teen hopes to become a child life specialist, so that she’s able to impact patients’ lives the same way the Child Life team at Cleveland Clinic Children’s impacted hers.
The event was hosted by Fox 8 anchor Stefani Schaefer and featured classically trained cellist and Cleveland Clinic Children’s patient Hannah Moses, 22, as well as the musical group The Modern Gentlemen.