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Fraser's Friends: A Special Cause

This time of year with the holidays fast approaching,  there are so many deadlines to have clients' homes ready for parties and family gatherings.

Photographer: Wade Blissard

This lovely client's home was no exception. For the past 6 months while having so much fun working with Brad and Melissa in thier new home, I have been hearing about a party deadline but really didn't know what this special occasion was all about!

Photographer: Wade Blissard

Two weeks before the party, while Melissa and her team worked to perfect the finishing touches inside the home, Aztec Events and Tents  was constructing a tent coverting their entire backyard into a room to host the big affair!! At this moment I realized this event was special and asked about the function.  

Photographer: John Lewis Photography

This was not just a party but rather a charity event graciously hosted by my sweet clients and benefiting Texas Children’s Hospital’s Fraser’s Friends, a cause so close and dear to them. In 2011 their daughter Hailey, a 13 old fit, athletic young lady began experiencing a series of seemingly unrelated minor health issues such as sore throat, ear ache, sinusitis, and strep throat. The ailments would resolve after taking antibiotics, steroids, or allergy medications so they didn’t think anything was serious.   


In late May, Hailey had strep throat accompanied by fever that would not go away with antibiotics, so her pediatrician, Dr. Rey Calderon, advised her mom to take her to Texas Children’s Hospital to be safe.  After a very long terrifying day in the Emergency Room, her blood pressure fell to dangerously low levels. Within a few minutes it was determined she needed open heart surgery to remove a large amount of accumulated fluid around her heart caused by “viral myocarditis”, a condition they said they encountered only 14 times per year in the hospital. 


Hailey endured a series of 5 different operations over the next 30 days or so, and after many very scary moments and lots of hard work on her part, she was released from the hospital to begin her life on lots of medication.

Photographer: John Lewis Photography

Hailey, pictured here with Dr. Charles D. Fraser, Jr., M.D., Surgeon-in-Chief, Donovan Chair and Chief Congenital Heart Surgery at Texas Children's Hospital, is doing well, going to school but missing being able to play competitive sports. She has volunteered over the past two summers working at Texas Children's Hospital, has been a speaker at various fundraisers for the hospital, and has shown a confidence and poise that is rare for a 15 year old who has gone through all of the pain and anguish that she has endured.

Taking in enchanting ambiance, it was easy to get lost in the evening while walking around mingling with all of the guests and enjoying the amazing food by  Swift + Company. The realization of the importance of the evening became clear when the Juneau family began personally sharing their story. 


Photographer: John Lewis Photography

In essence, as soon as Hailey was told she would need open heart surgery, the world class surgical team of Texas Children’s Hospital executed a highly complex surgery at 4:30 am the same day and saved Hailey’s life.  The Juneaus had no idea what they were facing when Hailey was taken to this hospital, which happens to be the third ranked hospital in the entire country. They very quickly gained a deep appreciation for the blessing that Texas Children’s Hospital and their talented staff were to their family, and the families of the many patients who are seen there each day. The average person may not consider a statistic such as a hospital ranking to be that important, but the moment that a loved one is at the brink of life or death, this statistic becomes the most important one you may ever encounter. Throughout the course of the evening, I was lucky enough to meet many of the supporters of Texas Children’s Hospital and I heard countless other tales of how this world-class hospital saved their children’s lives as well.

This is Melissa and I reminiscing on what a wonderful evening it was! The best part was learning more about Texas Children's Hospital and hearing beautiful, courageous Hailey and the Juneau family talk about their experience. Although my children have not gone through the unexpected health issues that Hailey has experienced, it comforts me greatly to know that if something ever should happen, Texas Children’s Hospital would be there for my family the way they were for the Juneaus.

Donations small and large are what keep Texas Children's Hospital saving lives, by funding their world class physicians, facilities, and research. To learn more about Frasier's Friends or if you would like to generously donate to the cause, please visit their website by clicking here. Thank you so much Brad, Melissa and Hailey for sharing your story and opening up your home!! We all wish your family continued health and happiness. Till next Monday! Xo, Leslie 

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Reader Comments (2)

That poor, sweet little girl! What she must have endured! What a brave and kind soul she is!
The house is beyond stunning. I have been in my own for four years and I haven't done half as much! Of course the only staff I have is me! LOL!



October 21, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterAndie

What a wonderful story, how proud you must have felt to play a part in getting this lovely home ready for "the party!" Thanks so much for sharing this story,
it reminds us once again, that beautiful homes & beautiful things are wonderful to have, but it is those we love that matters most. xo Lidy

October 27, 2013 | Unregistered CommenterFrenchGardenHouse

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