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March of Dimes walk raises funds to improve babies' health

March of Dimes walk raises funds to improve babies' health

February 19th, 2011 in News

Ty Brandt, 1, is held by his aunt at the back of the room as his parents, Joyce and Danny Brandt, tell about his premature birth and subsequent hospital stay and the emotional ups and downs that followed.

Photo by Julie Smith

Every family deserves to have a healthy baby.

And making strides to ensure all babies are born healthy is the mission of the March of Dimes. Local March for Babies team captains and volunteers gathered Friday for the annual kickoff event for the walk, which will be held April 17.

As many as one in eight babies is born prematurely in this country daily. Mid-Missouri is no different, and that is evident through the stories told by each person involved with March of Dimes.

Jason Jett, co-chairman for this year's walk, shared the story of his daughter Emma Mae, who was born weighing 3 pounds, 5 ounces.

Co-chairman Gabe Hulsey spoke of his daughter Hope, who was diagnosed prenatally with a lethal neurological birth defect, anencephaly. Hope lived 79 minutes, Hulsey said, and changed lives forever.