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Patients in the Spotlight: Brady Davern

Family Blindsided by Life-Threatening Defect in Son

On March 6, 2011, Jim and Jackie Davern welcomed their first baby boy into the world at Highland Hospital. The nurses took Brady to the special care nursery to watch him for a possible minor complication, but hours later, the Daverns were blindsided by news that something was seriously wrong with their newborn.Brady Davern in the NICU

Brady had a congenital diaphragmatic hernia; while growing in the womb a hole formed in Brady’s diaphragm, the muscle which helps us breathe. His organs drifted through the hole into his chest cavity, hindering the growth of his left lung.

Brady was rushed to Golisano Children’s Hospital at the University of Rochester Medical Center where he was admitted to the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit (NICU) in preparation for emergency surgery. Jackie was transferred to Strong Memorial Hospital so she could be near her critically ill baby.

“It’s not how you picture the first day of your baby’s life,” Jackie said. “Everyone was so great. The doctors and nurses explained everything and provided amazing support every step of the way. A medical librarian even came to our room with lots of information about congenital diaphragmatic hernia. We had never heard of Brady’s condition so we were very appreciative of all the support we received.”

After a complicated surgery performed by Walter Pegoli, M.D., chief of Pediatric Surgery, Brady spent 22 days recovering in the NICU.

“You never realize what an asset the children’s hospital is until you need it the most,” Jim said.

The support they received during that difficult time inspired the Daverns to work towards raising money and awareness for the hospital.

Brady Davern“We like to think that this happened to us because we’re in a position to give back and make a difference,” Jim said.

Moved by Brady’s inspirational recovery, the owners of The Garden Factory, longstanding friends of Jim and customers of Jim’s company, Beck’s Garden Supplies, donated almost $9,000 in proceeds from the kick-off event for this year’s Fall Family Fun Days to Golisano Children’s Hospital.

“We have a large connection with The Garden Factory and they wanted to do anything they could to help support us. The fundraiser was just a natural fit.”

To find out how you can help families like the Daverns, click here.