By Doug Dunbar

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NORTH TEXAS (CBS11) – In this week’s Wednesday’s Warriors, there has to be a better way.  That’s the mission of one North Texas family after a diagnosis of their newborn they never saw coming.

“When you have a brand new baby, you’re not expecting to get swept off to the hospital and end up in the NICU,” said Kert Turner regarding when doctors at Children’s Hospital Dallas told him and his wife, Leia the bad news.

Baby Addyson was born a healthy eight pounds in late 2015. But it was her color that had people concerned. Doctors soon discovered Addyson had a congenital heart defect.

“She had pulmonary atresia, which means her valve which goes from the right side of her heart to her left side was completely shut.”

What followed was a long hospital stay and three cardiac catheter procedures and as much cheering up as the Turners could muster.  Leia said holding Addyson during those rough times was infrequent, but every time she got the chance…

“A lot of singing and cuddles and prayers for my sweet little baby,” said Leia. “It was a long time before I could hold her, every time she had something done.”

But time stood still when Addyson had to ultimately have open heart surgery, to open her valve and place a patch.  Kert knew it was no longer in his hands.

“There’s nothing you can do but hope and pray it all works out,” said Kert.

Thankfully, it did.

While adults can receive a valve replacement through a far less invasive catheter procedure, that technology is not available for little children.  As a result of the journey with Addyson, the Turners are working to help change that and counting their blessings each day.

“We got to leave with our baby,” said Leia.  “Some people didn’t, so for us, that just shows how blessed we really are.”

Addyson is doing great now. She’ll need a heart valve replacement likely by the time she’s a teen.

The Turners have a fundraising page to raise money for research at the Heart Cath Center at Children’s Hospital Dallas.

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